Wates Property Services is ringing in the New Year with the appointment of Steve Jackson as Strategy Director, as the business bids a fond farewell to Phil Sperring, who retires after 40 years at Wates.
Steve, who has been with Wates for 23 years, is promoted from his previous position as Director of Operations for Wates Living Space and will now oversee the strategic direction of Wates Property Services’ two businesses, Wates Living Space and Wates FM. He will be responsible for business development, communications and contract mobilisation.
The appointment marks the creation of the new Wates Property Services Operating Board, which will be formed of James Gregg, Managing Director of Wates FM, Simon Osborne, Head of SHEQ and the business’ three Regional Managing Directors, Stewart Reid, Darren Burns and Gary Wilkinson.
The change in strategic leadership comes as the business’ long-serving Strategic Director, Phil Sperring, retires after four decades with the business.
Phil joined Wates as a site surveyor in the West Midlands in 1979 and worked on estate modernisation schemes on behalf of a number of local authorities, including Walsall Council and Birmingham City Council.
Throughout his career, Phil has been fundamental to Wates’ growth in the housing sector, including leading the first Decent Homes programme on behalf of Whitefriars Housing in Coventry. In 2013, Phil oversaw Wates Living Space’s acquisition of Linbrook and was responsible for the successful integration of the two businesses.
Phil now passes the mantle to Steve, his former mentee and long-standing colleague. The two were both founding Board Members for Wates Living Space when the business was established in 2006.
Steve joined Wates in 1996 working as a site surveyor for Wates Construction in Manchester. He soon joined the business’ housing maintenance division and worked as Commercial Manager before becoming Business Unit Director for Wates Living Space in 2006.
In 2011, Steve became Wates Living Space Managing Director for Central and North, subsequently becoming Director of Operations in 2016.
“It has been a true honour to work with Phil in varying capacities over the years. I have learnt so much from him. Wates is a family business and this comes through in everything Phil does. He has created a family network, has always worked collaboratively and it has been incredible to work with someone who has so much experience and knowledge. I’m looking forward to the challenges that await me and I’m determined to maintain the high standards Phil has set and ensure we never falter in delivering our promises to our clients.”
“I have been fortunate to work with some fantastic people during my time at Wates, who through real collaboration have achieved great things. Over the years, our business has evolved to respond to an ever-changing market and I’m honoured to have been part of that journey. I’m very proud to be passing the reins over to Steve; I can’t think of a more capable pair of hands to take my place.”
David Morgan, Managing Director of Wates Property Services, commented:
“We owe a debt of gratitude to Phil for his dedication to Wates over the past forty years. He has been a fundamental part of the business’ ongoing evolution and growth and central to us arriving at the impeccably high standards we hold today. It is of course a very exciting time as we welcome Steve to his new role as Strategic Director and look forward to the great things he will achieve over the coming years.”