People: Butcher & Barlow; Your Housing Group; Griffiths & Armour; Yodel; MDF Recovery; EET Retail

Hollie Loughman

North West Legal 500 law firm, Butcher & Barlow, has announced the promotion of two of its employees, Tom Newman and Hollie Loughman.

Tom has joined the Partnership, while Hollie has been promoted to Associate.

Tom Newman

Tom Newman joined the Corporate and Commercial team at Butcher & Barlow in October 2022, and has since been an invaluable member. He said: “I am really excited to see what the next stage of my career at Butcher & Barlow brings. Becoming a Partner is a big milestone for a solicitor and has been a key aim of mine ever since I qualified.”

Hollie Loughman, who works in the Family team, has also been recognised for her outstanding contributions to the firm. Accredited in Children’s Law by the Law Society, Hollie joined Butcher & Barlow in 2021 after completing her LPC in Manchester and her training with a local authority. She said: “The collaborative environment within Butcher & Barlow is really refreshing and fosters unparalleled support. I am looking forward to continuing to build my career at Butcher & Barlow.”

Jonathan Aldersley, Senior Partner, said: “Their dedication, expertise, and commitment to excellence aligns with our ethos at Butcher & Barlow and has been justly rewarded. We look forward to seeing them thrive in their new positions and continuing to contribute to the growth and success of our firm.”


Paula Marshall

Warrington-based Your Housing Group (YHG) has appointed two new executive officers into the newly created roles of Chief Property Officer and Executive Director of Housing & Customer.

Stepping into the newly created role of Chief Property Officer, is Ian Thomson. Ian joins from Magenta Living and will continue his already impressive and expansive career in housing and asset strategy and management.

He said, “I’m excited to be joining #TeamYHG from 1 July 2024 and I am absolutely committed to delivering excellence in property services and landlord compliance for our customers.”

Ian Thomson

The new Executive Director of Housing & Customer (EDHC) has been appointed following an internal promotion, with YHG’s current Director of Housing & Customer Service, Paula Marshall appointed to the new role. Paula joined YHG in early 2020 and has since made a huge impact in terms of her team leadership to support residents who have in turn acknowledged these changes with year-on-year improvements in annual customer survey.

Paula said: “I am really excited and proud to be joining the executive team to continue my housing career at YHG. We have seen many improvements in the last few years, particularly around culture and improved services to customers, and I look forward to further enhancing this as part of the new leadership team.”


Craig Roberts

Griffiths & Armour has appointed Craig Roberts and Jack Wolstencroft as Partners and also Directors of following FCA regulatory approval.

Joining the Griffiths & Armour Professional Risks Division in 2005, Craig advises firms who are responsible for designing and constructing the built environment on their professional risk exposures and what to do about them.

Jack Wolstencroft

His advisory work has seen him actively involved with a broad spectrum of client interests, from the firm’s largest international clients to institutional SME professions forums.

Jack joined Griffiths & Armour Insurance Brokers in 2006 as part of the firm’s highly successful graduate programme.

He has a wealth of experience in insurance broking across a variety of professions, with a focus on working closely with clients to fully understand their requirements.


Dan Hobden

Liverpool-based independent parcel carrier Yodel has appointed a new Chief Financial Officer to drive the business’s continuing growth following its acquisition in February.

Dan Hobden joins from fellow YDLGP consortium member, Shift, where he was CFO, following two years at Gett. He served in several roles before being appointed VP of Finance and Operations, taking responsibility for all finance, supply and regulatory relationships in the UK.

Dan has a background in accountancy and investment banking, bringing specialist experience in exploring and analysing investment strategies at the likes of Credit Suisse to his new role.

CEO, Mike Hancox, said: “Yodel has experienced a sustained increase in parcel volumes in recent years, with parcels volumes up three per cent to 191 million in 2023. Dan joins us as we continue to expand our consumer-to-consumer and Out of Home (OOH) offerings that have been a significant area of growth as more consumers choose pre-loved goods.

“We are incredibly grateful for departing CFO Stuart Caldwell’s invaluable work in leading the finance team. His work has been instrumental in positioning Yodel strongly for this next chapter, whilst Dan brings a wealth of experience in investment to the role as we explore new avenues to build on our existing growth momentum.”

Dan Hobden said: “Having worked closely with Yodel colleagues in recent months, we’ve already achieved a great deal together and I’m excited to be leading a skilled and dedicated team as we look to build on this success.

“With the support of colleagues and Yodel’s strong position to date, I am very excited about the business’s future prospects and I look forward to exploring new avenues to build the financial support to ensure the organisation’s continued success.”

YDLGP Ltd was formed earlier this year to create a large scale logistics provider, combining Yodel’s parcel delivery expertise with Shift’s innovative AI-driven platform. Alongside the previously acquired Tuffnells brand, the consortium will deliver strong operational efficiencies through technology to continue challenging competitors and expand market share.


Rob Elias

MDF Recovery, the Wythenshawe-based innovator which has developed proprietary technology to recycle MDF waste, has announced that Rob Elias has joined the company as head of business development within its newly-created commercial team.

Rob takes up his new role on May 1, 2024.

The technology development organisation is transitioning from an intense period of R&D into its commercial growth phase, and Rob’s appointment reflects company ambitions.

Rob will work alongside managing director, Craig Bartlett and head of commercial, Steve Harvey, to help provide sustainable technology to those organisations who want to embrace being part of the circular economy. Recovering high value wood fibres from discarded MDF means organisations can be part of a growing desire to be more environmentally friendly.

Steve Harvey said: “In Rob we’ve hired an expert in the science that underpins our proposition to the marketplace – there’s simply no one who knows more about MDF production technology or could be better placed to join the team. As a company looking to license the technology to manufacturers and other organisations, Rob’s knowledge in talking to customers and prospects will be invaluable – he understands their challenges and I’m hugely excited he’s joining the team.”

Rob, with a PhD from Bangor University, Wales, currently directs the institution’s BioComposites Centre, overseeing its management, scientific endeavours, and strategic vision.

He said: “I’m thrilled to be joining MDF Recovery and am excited to apply my knowledge and experience gained over many years of collaboration to help further develop and commercialise its innovative fibre recovery technologies.”


Deepak Maheshwari

EET Retail, the retail division of Stanlow-based EET Fuels, has appointed Narayan Bhatra as Chief Executive.

Narayan was previously Chief Retail Officer at Nayara Energy, India’s second largest oil and gas company and the country’s fastest growing private fuel station network. He has more than three decades of experience in the energy sector including management roles with Essar and Reliance Industries across India and Africa.

EET Retail has plans to develop a significant portfolio of Essar-branded fuel retail outlets within three years as part of its vision to become the UK’s ‘retailer of choice to consumers’. EET Retail will have a pan-UK presence and grow its network of outlets across all regions and markets, including identifying opportunities for potential acquisitions to accelerate its growth.

In the age of new mobility, EET Retail’s long-term strategy includes offering a range of low carbon, high quality fuels including serving the needs of drivers preferring e-mobility. These fuels will be offered in an environment that has a tailored selection of customer offerings, including non-fuel options.

Narayan Bhatra said: “I am excited to be joining EET Retail now. It has a clear and very ambitious vision for growth, as well as the potential to create a truly market leading proposition for low carbon high quality fuels, given EET Fuels’ huge investment in its decarbonisation plans at Stanlow, as well as building a world leading hydrogen production facility.”

Deepak Maheshwari, CEO of EET Fuels, said: “We are embarking on this exciting journey of growth and innovation in the retail sector in the UK and are confident in Narayan’s leadership. EET Retail plans to deliver best in class fuel outlets, creating a network of partnerships that are focused on Essar’s customer-first belief. Narayan’s appointment marks a significant milestone for EET, and we are excited about the opportunities ahead under his leadership.”

EET Fuels forms part of EET which is committed to playing a key role in the decarbonisation of the UK economy, and has ambitious plans to build an energy transition park at its site in the North West and to become the UK’s first low carbon process refinery. This aligns with the Government’s Ten Point Plan on the Green Industrial Revolution and with its British Energy Security Strategy.

Tony Fountain, EET Managing Director, said: “EET Fuels is a key part of Essar Energy Transition and we are committed to maintaining a strong, secure manufacturing base for fuels in the North West and across the UK.

“Our approach provides our customers with the assurance of working with a partner that is committed to decarbonising our production processes, playing our part to ensure that the UK delivers on its climate change goals and enhancing energy security. I look forward to working with Narayan to share this industry-leading commitment with our retail customers.”

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