Movers and Shakers: East Midlands appointments and promotions

Latest dates from the region:

Loughborough University

HS2 Managing Director Mark Thurston has come to Loughborough University as a visiting professor of complex project and program management.

Professor Thurston graduated from Loughborough with a Masters in Engineering Management in 2001 and was appointed as the new CEO of HS2 in 2017.

With over 25 years of project and program management experience, he has worked on some of the UK’s largest infrastructure projects in both the public and private sectors.

Prior to joining HS2, he was Regional General Manager for Europe at CH2M – a US-based global engineering firm that employs more than 25,000 people worldwide.

There he held management positions in key programs, including three years as director of strategic projects at Crossrail.

He was also Program Delivery Manager at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games where he led the Power Lines Under Grounding project and the £ 500 million Structures, Bridges and Motorways program.

Through his professorship at the University’s Faculty of Architecture, Civil Engineering and Civil Engineering, he will help shape the strategic direction of research and teaching at the school in complex infrastructure programs and exchange ideas with students from all programs.

Professor Thurston said: “Having previously studied for my Masters at Loughborough University, it is a real honor to be a visiting professor now.

“In addition to the many benefits rail will bring to the UK, HS2 is also committed to leaving a lasting legacy of skills and knowledge in engineering and on large-scale projects.

“I look forward to supporting research and teaching in this area and talking to the students about the project.”

The access group

The Access Group, a leading provider of business solutions and software for medium to large companies, has named Charles Butterworth as General Manager of the Access People division.

Mr. Butterworth is a senior executive with over 24 years of experience in technology, telecommunications and investment banking, including 13 years at the MD and CEO levels.

Charles Butterworth is the new General Manager of the Access People division of the Access Group

As Managing Director of Access People, he will lead the HR, salary, learning, development and compliance teams of the Access Group. His tasks include further integrating the latest company acquisitions into the Access People business for the benefit of customers, partners and employees.

Access Groups has a new headquarters in Loughborough for £ 20 million.

He said, “I am very excited to be part of The Access Group at such an exciting time in developing the business.

“The Access team and the capabilities of the Access People division are world-class, and I am particularly impressed with the opportunities for the company in the years to come.”

Roberts Travel

Roberts Travel Group has appointed Bill Tanser as general manager.

Mr. Tanser had previously spent 27 years with Woods Coaches of Wigston, where he began his career as a service driver before moving through the ranks as a coach driver, traffic manager and ultimately general manager in 2013.

Bill Tanse is the general manager of Roberts Travel Group

Roberts Travel Group, based in Hugglescote near Coalville, Leicestershire, operates a fleet of more than 80 vehicles and employs more than 120 people.

He said, “As much as I’ve enjoyed my long career at Woods, the opportunity to join a fast-growing and highly respected company like Roberts Travel Group was too good to miss.”

Best known as a coach and day trip company, Roberts also operates a busy private rental division and Leicester Park and Ride services, as well as several scheduled bus routes and transportation to schools across the area.

Jonathan Hunt, Managing Director of Roberts Travel Group, said, “It is a great benefit for us to have the services of such an experienced and talented person as Bill at a time when our company is in a period of rapid growth, and we do look forward to welcoming him on board. “

Copart UK

Vehicle rescue and online vehicle auction business Copart UK has hired Richard Howe to run the central operations of its new Customer Excellence Center in Bedford, which has created around 35 new jobs in the region.

Mr. Howe has over 30 years of commercial, engineering and claims experience, joining Copart from Markerstudy Insurance where he served as technical director.

Copart UK has moved to three floors in Franklin Court in Bedford’s Priory Business Park

Copart UK processes vehicles that have collected for its customers – which include most of the UK’s largest insurers – for salvage and remarketing through its global online auction.

Mr. Howe will take on Copart’s customer service functions, including insurance claims, automotive engineering and auditing.

He said, “I come to Copart at a very exciting time as the business continues to grow and invest in continuous improvement of products and services to meet the growing needs of customers.

“I look forward to supporting and influencing the continued growth and success of these key areas of the business.”

Copart announced in November that it had secured 10,000 square feet of office space on three floors of Franklin Court in Bedford’s Priory Business Park to meet growing customer demand.

Jane Pocock, Managing Director of Copart UK and Ireland, said, “We are pleased to announce that our Customer Excellence Center is now open and operational, providing our partners with world class, end-to-end outsourced services and more can drive returns from their vehicles.

“Given the essential nature of the services we offer, we were determined to press ahead with the opening of the center despite the current national lockdown.”

The new Customer Excellence Center employs around 135 people, around 100 of whom have moved from Copart’s headquarters in nearby Wootton to Franklin Court.

Smith Cooper

Midlands auditing and management consultancy firm Smith Cooper has run a number of promotions for many of their service lines. They include:

Natalie Pollard, Senior Manager Tax Advisor

Kimberley Wapplington, Senior Manager, Business Recovery and Bankruptcy

Ali Raynor, Manager, Audit

Annabelle Rowlinson, manager, accounting

Tara Adams, assistant manager, accounting

Matthew Aston, Executive Vice President, Audit

Jonathan Dunn, Executive Vice President, Audit

James Cooper, Managing Partner of Smith Cooper (right) and Senior Partner David Nelson

The promotions follow recent external strategic hires, which include the hiring of Adam Rollason in the Birmingham-based tax advisory department, Harriet Pye-Watson to join the growing personal client team, and Dinesh Pancholi, senior manager in the specialized labor tax team .

Senior Partner David Nelson said: “While the effects of Covid-19 and government action to combat its spread resulted in several advisory and corporate finance projects being delayed,

“In the nine months ended December 20, the company achieved encouraging growth in most of its service lines.

“We were particularly pleased with the continued growth in our auditing, accounting and tax compliance businesses, which, following investments and strategic direction, took full advantage of the changes brought about by the top 10 companies’ revised approach to service delivery and pricing . “

The company has offices in Birmingham, Derby, Nottingham, Ashbourne, Telford, Cambridge, Leicester, Newcastle and London.


National potato supplier Branston brought Richard Fell in as chief executive of its prepared team to oversee the company’s growth plans.

This appointment supports Branston’s planned £ 12 million investment to expand its prep factory to provide more capacity to meet increasing customer demand.

The potato supplier Branston brought Richard Fell in as managing director of his prepared team

This will allow the company to introduce new technologies and functions as well as a protein plant that can extract vegan protein from potato waste, creating a whole new range of products and customer bases.

The company, headquartered in Branston, Lincs, processes around 350,000 tons of potatoes annually.

General Manager James Truscott said, “This investment will support our growth plans and give us the opportunity not only to grow our prep business, but also to develop new products and customers so that we can grow our workforce through 2021 and beyond.

“We have chosen Richard to lead this priority area for Branston, which is a new position within the business.

“During our expansion phase, he will work closely with me, our board of directors and the more widely prepared team. Richard has a wide range of skills and experience and we look forward to welcoming him on board. “

Mr. Fell has over 22 years of high-level chilled food, bakeries and mill management experience having worked at Rank Hovis Milling, Premier Foods and Princes.

Branston is a leading potato supplier supporting UK retailers and wholesalers across the country, supplying seeds to potato growers.

Ibstock Plc

James Dowson has been named Apprentice of the Year for Leicestershire based brickmaker Ibstock Plc.

James, who works at the Ibstock Brick Birtley factory on Chester-Le-Street, impressed the selection panel with his proactive approach, initiative and practical application of his skills.

James Dowson is honored by John Lambert, Ibstock’s regional production manager

The 25-year-old completed his training as an engineer in mechanical engineering (mechanical engineering) in 2019 and is in the final phase of his training as an electrical engineer to become a dual engineer.

The award, which is already in its sixth year, is an opportunity to celebrate extraordinary achievements.

Ibstock apprentices acquire knowledge of the business through a mix of instruction and hands-on learning, with graduates acquiring externally recognized academic and professional qualifications.

The Apprentice of the Year award has a prize of £ 500 as well as a two-part trophy – half of the trophy goes to the apprentice and half to the factory they work at.

James said: “Ibstock’s apprenticeship program is known for producing a high standard of apprentices.

“I am very proud to be honored as Apprentice of the Year. The program has given me a lot of learning opportunities and has helped me develop as an engineer.

“I would like to thank everyone who supported me during my studies and my practical experience on site. I hope that I can continue my career at Ibstock over the next few years and have a positive impact in the future. “

In addition to the training program, Ibstock also offers a four-year trainee program for production management, in which participants complete a basic course in addition to the technical modules from Ibstock.

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