People: Wain Estates; PHX Training; DSG Chartered Accountants; Lichfields; Swansway Motor Group; Broadway Partners

Freya Macdonald

Privately-owned strategic land and property company, Wain Estates, has appointed Freya Macdonald as land manager, signalling the company’s appetite for geographic expansion.

Freya, who holds an MSc in Urban Planning from Newcastle University, gained her experience in strategic land promotion while working for two national housebuilders and joins the Warrington-based company from Harrow Estates.

Originally from Norfolk, Freya will be responsible for securing strategic land opportunities for future sale on the open market across the East Midlands and South Central regions, from Nottinghamshire, to north of the M25.

Wain Estates Land Promotion managing director, Angela Heaney, said: “Freya’s arrival is key to the geographic expansion of our land promotion business along the eastern corridor of the UK.

“This is an exciting time for the business as we look to introduce the Wain Estates brand into new territories and develop strong relationships with landowners and agents as we continue on our journey to genuine national coverage. Freya has a passion for the built environment and a personality entirely in keeping with the culture and values which set Wain apart.”

Freya said: “Wain Estates has a reputation for creating the best outcomes for landowners and I am excited to join such a highly acquisitive business and help grow our brand across the east of England.”

The land promotion division is already promoting 4,000 residential homes on behalf of third party landowners, and is aspiring to evolve into one of the UK’s leading promoters.


A North West training provider has strengthened its management team with an experienced new appointment.

Amanda Sumner has joined PHX Training as business manager at the company’s Preston office, where she will lead the team in helping local people learn new skills and gain employment.

Amanda Sumner

Amanda, who hails from Preston, has more than 30 years’ experience in the training industry, having previously worked as a tutor and assessor, as well as in International Quality Assurance (IQA) compliance and the evaluation of funded projects.

PHX Training has centres across Lancashire and Cumbria, and runs training courses to help people get back in to work, as well as upskilling employees across the region.

The company recently celebrated the milestone of having delivered 10,000 qualifications, helping 7,500 people in the North West to learn new skills and find employment.

Amanda said: “I’m really looking forward to using my experience to help people achieve their goals.”

Briony Fawcett, PHX Training managing director, said: “Amanda’s experience and understanding of the industry is invaluable, making her the perfect person to lead our Preston team and help make a difference to people’s lives.”


DSG Chartered Accountant has made four partner promotions in its Liverpool office.

Laura Leslie, Neil Kelly and Angela Harrison have all been promoted to the position of corporate partner as DSG further enhances its audit and corporate advisory offering, which sees the firm act as advisers to its diverse range of clients.

Laura joined DSG as a graduate and completed her training contract with the firm before moving to Deloitte. There she achieved successive promotions to the position of senior manager before returning to DSG as corporate business director in 2018. With extensive experience working with all sizes of business, especially small and medium-sized, owner-managed businesses, Laura has an in depth understanding of business strategy. She also supports the firm in its corporate finance offering.

Clockwise from top left: Angela Harrison, Neil Kelly, Murray McLean, Laura Leslie

Having spent 10 years as a corporate director with Mazars in the North West, Neil joined DSG in 2019. As a partner in the corporate business team, Neil works with owner-managed businesses and a number of privately owned and private equity-backed groups, helping them to achieve their strategic objectives and meet their compliance requirements. Serving clients predominantly in the North West region but also further afield in London and the South, Neil’s ethos fits perfectly with that of the firm, spending time with clients to understand their needs and develop tailored solutions.

Angela joined the firm in late 2019 having previously worked at both international and larger regional audit firms. In addition to her professional practice and solicitor clients, Angela provides practical advice to family, privately owned and private equity-backed businesses to achieve their commercial and regulatory objectives. As a corporate partner, Angela will continue to develop DSG’s growing audit team and client base in the North West.

Meanwhile, Murray McLean has been promoted to tax and private client partner. Since joining DSG in 2018, with more than 30 years’ experience, Murray has demonstrated his in-depth knowledge of the local business community and the medical and legal sectors.

Murray also specialises in capital tax planning such as Inheritance Tax and Capital Gains Tax as well as providing tax planning advice on offshore tax matters for individuals leaving and arriving in the UK. In his new role, Murray will lead the DSG private client offering as part of an enlarged Tax & Private Client service line.

Andrew Moss, partner at DSG, said: “The promotions of Laura, Neil and Angela reflect our commitment to growing our corporate business service. The last year has been one of the most exciting for new opportunities, and with their leadership we’ll continue to provide our clients with the best advice and a quality service.”

Mark Kearsley, tax partner at DSG, said: “Murray has played an integral role in building out our private client offering, an area we’ve identified for significant growth over the coming months and years. With his leadership, I’m sure this part of the business is set to go from strength to strength.”


Manchester planning and development consultancy, Lichfields, has made several senior promotions as it continues to develop and expand its operations.

Katie Howarth, left, and Kirstie Oakey

Clover Long

Katie Howarth and Kirstie Oakey become planning directors based at Lichfields’ King Street office. They are joined by new senior planner, Clover Long.

Recognising their ongoing contributions to the business, chief executive James Fennell said: “These promotions reflect the excellent work these staff have undertaken for our clients. We have achieved another year of record revenue levels and our promoted staff have played a big part in that success.

“The promotions are extremely well deserved and reflect Lichfields’ continued focus on investing in our staff and in the future growth of the business.

“The promotions encapsulate the diversity of talent we have at Lichfields, across all our offices and functions.”

Lichfields currently employs 243 people across its nine national offices.


Swansway Motor Group has promoted James Keir to brand manager at its Crewe Volkswagen dealership.

James began his journey with Swansway around 10 years ago when he joined the Wrexham Volkswagen retailer as workshop controller.

James Keir

After some time away from the business, James returned to Swansway in 2017, spending the past five years based at the Crewe Volkswagen retailer as aftersales manager.

James’s promotion to brand manager is something he has been working towards for some time and he said he is excited about the new challenge ahead: “I’m looking forward to getting to grips with the sales side of things.

“With a background in aftersales, it’s a new challenge to now be overseeing the whole business. I have a great relationship with the sales team and I’m eager to build on that from a new perspective.”

He added: “I am so thankful to Swansway for the opportunity to take on this role, I’m excited to get stuck in and I am confident that the transition will be smooth, the team we have at Crewe Volkswagen are fantastic and I am grateful to them for all their support.”


Senior telecoms executive, Steve Haines, has been appointed CEO of specialist gigabit-capable fibre broadband provider Broadway Partners, which is backed by investment manager Downing LLP.

Steve has been brought in to drive growth at the Liverpool-based company as it focuses on connecting 250,000 homes across rural Wales and Scotland.

The former CEO of Lightspeed and MD with BT Group and Openreach brings 35 years of experience in fixed and wireless telecoms to Broadway, which secured a £145m deal with Downing in October 2021, to accelerate its delivery programme of bringing full-fibre broadband to rural communities.

Steve Haines

He will work alongside Broadway Partners’ founders, Michael Armitage and Barry Weaver, who move to new roles as chief development officer and chief technology officer, respectively.

Downing’s funding is supporting the drive to connect isolated communities. It is the first investment from Downing’s managed funds in fibre broadband which is a key enabler of economic growth and social mobility and wellbeing. Infrastructure investing can also deliver predictable returns for investors and an element of inflation-proofing.

Broadway will be investing in ‘Fibre to the Premises (FTTP)’ gigabit-ready infrastructure and connecting communities across rural areas of Wales and Scotland – including the Isle of Arran off Scotland’s West Coast, and Pembrokeshire, Monmouthshire and Powys in South and Mid Wales.