People on the move: Hurst; WSP; Pugh; Merrick; Wilson Cooke

Liz Gallagher

Accounting and business advisory firm Hurst has announced a raft of promotions across four of its teams.

Liz Gallagher has been made a partner in the tax team.

She provides tax advice to small and medium-sized businesses and owner-managed companies, specialising in reorganisations, acquisitions and disposals, employee ownership trusts, succession and inheritance tax planning.

Liz, who began her career at the Inland Revenue, joined Hurst in 2012.

In Hurst corporate finance, Ben Bradley has become an associate director and Ryan Niblock has been promoted to manager.

Both joined the practice as graduate trainees.

Samantha Tingey, Alexandra Pearce and Ryan Tattler have been promoted in Hurst’s business services team.

Sam becomes an assistant manager and Alex and Ryan become seniors.

In Hurst’s payroll division, Lisa Wichlacz has been promoted to assistant team manager and Siouan Oliver to supervisor level.

Tim Potter, chief executive of Hurst, said: “We are delighted to announce our latest promotions which reflect the talent of our team.

“Our preference is always to promote from within and we have a strong track record of doing this.

“Five of the eight staff who have been promoted began their careers as trainees at Hurst.

“We put a lot of effort into training and developing people into rounded business advisers, and it is fabulous to see them progress with us.”

He said Hurst was continuing to recruit externally in response to a growing client base.


Engineering and professional services consultancy WSP has recently welcomed back Liverpool-based Kevin Riley as director for transport.

Kevin is a specialist in transport for regeneration and development schemes and will be returning to WSP after 15 years.

Based in WSP’s Liverpool office in Exchange Station, Kevin will help in further developing the team’s growing capacity in both public and private sectors across the North of England.

Previously technical and project director at Mott McDonald and AECOM, Kevin has more than 25 years’ of experience in the industry, most well-known for his multi-disciplinary work on major sites, strategies and strategic projects.

Kevin has so far led a variety of commissions ranging from the transport vision for Liverpool’s Knowledge Quarter, through to a masterplan for Blackpool Airport and feasibility of the now implemented Chester Bus Interchange.

Kevin Riley

Now Kevin will look to enhance the profile of the Northern business and the development and regeneration work of the company.

He said: “I’m delighted to return to WSP after 15 years away and it’s amazing to see how the company has grown and evolved during that period, particularly with the forthcoming relocation of the Manchester Office to the First Street development.

“It’s with excitement that I prepare in helping to further expand our strong team in Liverpool and across the North, combining the range of other disciplines in the business to enhance our capability.”

WSP also welcomes Keith Mitchell who joins as transaction director in the public private partnership (PPP) and investment services team, based in Manchester.

Keith brings a wealth of experience in infrastructure finance across the social infrastructure, defence and waste sectors, having previously held posts of projects director and divisional director at Mott MacDonald.

He most recently directed a number of transaction advisory projects in the Turkish Healthcare PPP programme through to financial close and in the UK defence sector led the transaction advisory and asset management services on the UKMFTS Fixed Wing 1B project.

Keith said: “I am looking forward to working in an expanding team in the UK and helping WSP to grow its PPP and investment services internationally.”

Property auction house Pugh has appointed Edward Feather as associate director and auctioneer.

Joining the firm from SDL Auctions in Chester, Feather has 12 years’ property auction experience.

He was also a director at the Cheshire and North Wales franchise of the Auction House business, based at estate agent Humphreys in Chester, before its acquisition by SDL in 2016.

Pugh managing director Paul Thompson said: “We are really pleased to be welcoming Edward on board to join our growing team at Pugh.

“As an experienced property auctioneer with his considerable knowledge and experience of the North West residential market, Edward is a very strong addition to our auction team.

Edward Feather

“Alongside increasing residential instructions Edward will be taking a lead role in Pugh’s national estate agents affiliate relationships programme.”

Based at Pugh’s Newton-le-Willows head office, Feather made his first appearance as an auctioneer for the firm at last week’s North West auction at the AJ Bell Stadium in Manchester, where more than 100 lots went under the hammer.

Established 26 years ago, Pugh says it is the UK’s largest commercial auction house outside London, generating £90m in sales last year.

The firm was acquired by property consultant Eddisons in 2016 and stages regular property auctions in Manchester and Leeds.


Award-winning family lawyer Merrick has appointed a new solicitor to its team.

Gabrielle Dugan said she was looking forward to using her skills to help people through their most vulnerable times.

Gabrielle Dugan

She has previously worked with Co-op Legal Services in Manchester, following working as a paralegal and undertaking her training in London.

She said: “I personally think family law is the area that is the most sensitive and most important to people and their well-being.

“It’s a time when people are at their most vulnerable and need the most assistance. Nowadays some people think Google is their solicitor and they don’t need help, but on reflection they often say, ‘I can’t do this on my own, I need help with this’.”

She joins the company, based in Peter Street, Manchester, as it develops its Merrick Life platform, which offers holistic support for those going through divorce.

Merrick principal, Amanda Merrick, said: “Gabrielle’s thinking very much fits with the ethos of the team here in wanting to make the law as widely accessible as possible.

“Her appointment is the next step in ensuring we can offer our knowledge and experience to more of those who need assistance.”


Following the expansion of its portfolio, integrated marketing agency Wilson Cooke has created three new positions to help coordinate key service deliveries.

Group account director Kathryn Brown, formerly of BJL and McCann Manchester, has been brought on board to help develop existing client relationships.

Lee Lambourne, previously of Western Union International Bank, will lead on new business opportunities as business development director.

From left: Cain Wilkes, Kathryn Brown and Lee Lambourne

And digital outreach executive Cain Wilkes has joined Wilson Cooke to help deliver a new social media and outreach offering for both existing, and new clients.

Commenting on the new additions, Wilson Cooke managing director Mark Law said: “This is a really exciting time for Wilson Cooke as we look to complement our already amazing team with a number of key hires.

“Kathryn, Lee and Cain bring a raft of experience in their respective fields and will be key drivers to the next phase of our growth as a result driven integrated agency, and will help deliver huge value to our amazing clients.”

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