What are the prospects for the property sector in Yorkshire and Humber?
Despite the political uncertainty we face currently, the outlook for the property sector remains positive. We have experienced a high volume of demand for industrial units in the region in recent months, as well as an increase in the number of enquiries and units going under offer. Similarly, our retail developments in the region have had an encouraging level of take up. I firmly believe that the Yorkshire and Humber region is well placed to deal with any challenges that may lie ahead.
What is the best project you have been involved in?
I’ve been involved in many regeneration projects throughout the country ranging in scale, but as I was raised in a pit village in Barnsley, many of my most memorable developments have been involved with the regeneration of former coalfields throughout the region.
The first development we worked on in 2016 was on a former colliery site at Allerton Bywater. As a start-up business it took a few years to get the development off the ground, but it helped us cement relationships with Homes England and Keepmoat Homes through the delivery of high-quality, speculative commercial accommodation.
What is your favourite building in the region and why?
Wentworth Woodhouse and Wentworth Castle stand out for me. They are both eye-catching and have an amazing back-story to them. It’s great to see the Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust working on the restoration of the building and opening the grounds to the public.
If you could change one thing to improve the property industry in this region, what would it be?
A simplified planning process would aid local authorities and developers. We often encounter delays in obtaining planning permission on what should be a relatively straightforward process.
Who has inspired you?
The inspiration to set up my own business came from my parents who both worked for themselves, often working hard and long hours without the rewards at times. I think it helps to experience the rough with the smooth. No matter how hard you try, things don’t always go your way.
If I was to choose someone within the property industry, it would have to be my very first boss, Barry Seal at Wilbys in Barnsley.