Leadership Team

Stepnell Company Directors

Meet the Stepnell Directors - follow the links for detailed profiles.

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Mark Wakeford

MA, CEng, FICE

Joint Managing Director

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Mark Wakeford

Mark Wakeford

MA, CEng, FICE

Joint Managing Director

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Contact Mark Wakeford

Mark is a graduate of Cambridge University and has worked in the construction industry since 1989.

A Chartered Civil Engineer, Mark brings a technical construction background to the forefront of Stepnell’s projects and a clear understanding of construction risk management. This has underpinned his commitment to the adoption of best practice and modern methods of management in the company which have been major drivers of growth in recent years. A former main board member of the Joint Contracts Tribunal (JCT) and the Contracts Committee, Mark currently sits on the Strategic Forum for Construction and the Construction Leadership Council - the top industry umbrella bodies that advise Government and promotes industry best practice.

Mark believes Stepnell’s growth has come through tackling new markets with a bespoke and very technically competent service. Pioneering construction projects he has led include the award-winning Whitecross High School PFI project, where Stepnell was the smallest corporate body to ever invest and deliver a scheme of this type. Mark has also taken a managing role in the company’s local authority construction frameworks, its major hospital contracts and Stepnell’s on-going building programme of community-based primary care surgeries.

Mark also chairs The Construction Alliance a grouping of major construction trade organisations comprising the National Federation of Builders, The Federation of Master Builders, Scottish Building and The Civil Engineering Contractors’ Association. The Alliance represents over 13,500 individual SMEs, larger contractors and local builders in the UK.

Mark is also a member of the Construction Leadership Council, the body formed to drive the industry targets in “Construction 2025”.

Tom Wakeford

MEng (Hons), CEng, MICE

Joint Managing Director

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Tom Wakeford

Tom Wakeford

MEng (Hons), CEng, MICE

Joint Managing Director

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Contact Tom Wakeford

 

Tom Wakeford is Joint Managing Director with responsibility for construction delivery and as such is responsible for all the construction teams.

He previously oversaw the Wantage office and guided its expansion into a business unit with turnover of over £25m. This success was due to a focus on high quality, customer satisfaction and careful selection of the right opportunities. He guided Wantage office to be one of the major regional contractors and is still closely involved with its continued growth.

Before becoming a Director, Tom was a Contracts Manager working out of our Poole Office. Previous projects included construction of new Crematorium projects in Shepton Mallet and East Devon.

Previously Tom has served as an officer with the Army Reserves, including mobilisation to both Iraq and Afghanistan, which developed his team working, leadership and communication skills and enhanced his skills of working and delivering a strong performance under pressure.

 

 

Peter Wakeford

Director

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Peter Wakeford

Peter Wakeford

Director

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Peter Wakeford is the longest serving Director at the Stepnell Group having joined the board in 1969. He a fourth generation member of the Wakeford family who originally founded the company.

Peter is also the Director responsible for the property arm of the Group.

Peter's role and responsibilities include management of the existing diversified Property Portfolio of factories, warehouses, shops, offices, leisure facilities, flats and houses, including a number of Listed Buildings. The Stepnell Property Management ethos is one of active management that reflects the construction background of this business. The policy is to sustain and enhance rental income by ensuring buildings are well maintained, investing where necessary to meet changing needs and aspirations of occupiers.

Peter is also involved in seeking out and promoting opportunities for development of land and property to create diversified construction opportunities for the core construction business. Because of this Peter has involvement in the multi-disciplinary activities of land and property development dealing with a wide range of complex and interrelated issues.

Richard Wakeford

ICIOB

Director

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Richard Wakeford

Richard Wakeford

ICIOB

Director

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Richard joined the Stepnell group in 2002 and furthered his knowledge base on the complexities around the design and construction of building projects and the education sector in particular. Richard was the project manager responsible for co-ordinating the bid and subsequent construction and ongoing operation of Whitecross High School, one of the last single school PFI builds in the country. Richard had involvement in the design, funding, lifecycle, facilities management and risk management of the project as well as being, and continuing to be, the main point of contact for the Client. Subsequent projects include The Minster College Single School Pathfinder project with Herefordshire Council where Richard led the winning bid and continues to sit on the Council’s Project Board as representative of the design and build partner.

Building on Stepnell’s long established record of a construction partner that not only delivers exemplar buildings but addresses our Client’s broader needs, Richard has developed a detailed understanding of how the built environment is capable of affecting the learning environment in schools. Richard is also one of the champions of sustainability within Stepnell having developed the company’s environmental procedures and supporting the social and financial strengths of the business. As a fifth generation family member of a long standing business, ongoing sustainability is important to Richard.

Richard is the Stepnell board member who represents our wholly owned subsidiary George Law Ltd.

He is also a member of Sustainability West Midlands and sits on the WMCCE Climate Change Adaptation Working Group.

Bill Haynes

MCIOB

Construction Director

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Bill Haynes

Bill Haynes

MCIOB

Construction Director

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Bill joined Stepnell in 2007 as Construction Director and is responsible for all the construction contracting operations out of the Rugby and Grantham offices; he is also the Director responsible for Health and Safety. Based at the Rugby Head Office he leads established construction teams made up of Contract Managers, Site Managers, Surveyors and Buyers.

He has over 40 years’ experience in construction contracting and whilst progressing from Contracts Manager to Operations Director, he has been responsible for a diverse range of schemes in different sectors, ranging in individual project values from £1 million to £30 million. He is extremely focused on client needs and expectations with a reputation for a collaborative, non-adversarial style of management.

Prior to joining Stepnell, Bill played a major part at Morgan Sindall in developing a small publicly owned contracting business from a £15 million business to a £40 million regional business centre producing above average profits in 3 years.

 

Rob Speirs

BSc (Hons), ICIOB

Director

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Rob Speirs

Rob Speirs

BSc (Hons), ICIOB

Director

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Rob Speirs is the director with special responsibility for leading and expanding south coast construction operations at our office in Poole, Dorset.

Building on the company’s reputation for delivering high-calibre buildings and exceptional client service, Rob has secured a series of significant and high-profile developments and overseen their successful completion.   

Since joining Stepnell as regional director in summer 2015, Rob has steered the business through an exciting period of growth in Dorset and the south coast. Rob was made a board director in April 2017.

Rob started out in the construction industry as an engineer and has over 20 years of experience.  Prior to joining Stepnell, Rob worked for Ballast, Fitzpatrick and JB Leadbitter.