I am Managing Director of Bolsterstone Group Plc, a commercial and residential property development company based at Sheepbridge in Chesterfield, established in 1989.
Bolsterstone works nationally, but locally we are better known as the lead investors and developer of the Chesterfield Waterside scheme. We also have ongoing major urban regeneration developments in Bradford and Sheffield, together with a large scale leisure project in Staffordshire.
My other responsibilities include being Chair of Destination Chesterfield and a private sector representative on the Derbyshire Economic Partnership Board. Both are immensely rewarding roles and I feel privileged to be able to contribute to the growth and development of Chesterfield.
I am married and have four grown up children who have all attended local schools, three of whom continue to live and work in the area; my eldest son is married, and lives and works in Cambridge.
What has been the highlight for your organisation over the past year?
The last twelve months have really been pivotal in Waterside’s development. We’re gaining traction, finally seeing physical progress after years of painstaking planning. Conclusion of the collaboration agreement which will facilitate the delivery of the Build to Rent apartments at Waterside was a major step forward.
What are your future plans? (new products/services, growth, taking on apprentices, news etc.)
2018/19 will continue with the momentum of the last year, taking Phase one of both Basin Square and The Park forward. Construction is anticipated to begin Q1 2019 on family housing in The Park following a detailed planning application by the preferred bidder when selected selected. We also have heights and massing agreed for 310 build to rent apartments and a seven storey office block in Basin Square, which subject to approval of the reserved matters applications, will be under construction in Q1 2019. 30% of the office space is already pre-let, so this is all very exciting.
How would you describe Chesterfield to a potential investor? (What sets us apart from other towns?)
I went to College in Chesterfield, and love the character of the Town – both the people and the architecture. The town has ambitions for the future which, importantly, are firmly supported by the public, council, and business community. There are so many positives about running a business in Chesterfield, not least the town’s proximity to excellent road, rail and airport services. Another positive about running a business here is the willing workforce.
Which high profile events are working well in Chesterfield and what kinds of events would you like to see in the future?
The Chesterfield Food and Drink Awards is one of my favourite events each year, along with the Chesterfield Retail Awards. It’s very exciting that the Retail Awards are going to move towards the format of the Food and Drink Awards this year. Any event that brings together the business community in Chesterfield to celebrate what we’re accomplishing is something that I am glad to see.
Where in the town do you spend your leisure time?
One of my favourite ways to spend any free time I get is to walk my dogs in the Derbyshire countryside, which I believe is some of the best in the UK – sometimes, if we are lucky, we even end up at a country pub!!
Destination Chesterfield Board and team photography by Amanda McConnell Photography and John Bradley Photography.