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Orbit Group welcomes Andrew Stanford to Board

Orbit Group has appointed Andrew Stanford, currently head of the Government’s Private Rented Sector Taskforce, to its Board. His appointment will add significant value to Orbit through understanding and insight of the commercial housing sector. 

In his role on the taskforce, Andrew is charged with kick-starting the build for market rent housing sector within the UK. This role is a secondment from running his own bespoke property consultancy.

A well-respected chartered surveyor and property consultant by trade, Andrew has a deep understanding of UK residential and mixed-use property investment at both a practical and strategic level. He was also previously involved in the residential committee of the British Property Federation.

Paul Tennant, Orbit Group Chief Executive, said: "Strong governance is more important than ever before in this dynamic and challenging operating environment and so we are delighted to have attracted someone of Andrew’s experience and calibre to what is already a highly experienced Board team.”

In the past twelve months, Orbit has also appointed Steve Brown, Richard Berrett and David Young to the Board. The Board is chaired by Baroness Tessa Blackstone.

Profiles of all other Orbit Group Board members can be found below:

Tessa Blackstone, Chair

Baroness Blackstone is former Vice Chancellor of the University of Greenwich and currently Chair of the British Library and Great Ormond Street Hospital. She is also a trustee of the Royal Opera House. Baroness Blackstone was awarded a life peerage in 1987 and sits on the Labour benches in the Lords. After Labour came to power in 1997, she was Minister of State for Education and Employment (1997-2001) and Arts Minister (2001-03). In 2001, Baroness Blackstone was appointed to the Privy Council.

Tony Crook, Deputy Chair

Professor Tony Crook, CBE, is former Pro-Vice Chancellor of The University of Sheffield. He has a large research programme on housing markets with grants of over £3m and over 150 publications. Professor Crook is a Trustee of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Council member of the Academy of Social Sciences (and Chair of its Policy Working Group), a member of the Royal Town Planning Institute's Board of Trustees, and a member of the Institute of Housing's Influence Board. Professor Crook is a Fellow of the RTPI and an Academician of the Academy of Social Sciences. He was appointed CBE in the 2014 New Year’s Honours for his services to housing and the governance of charities.

Fran Beckett

Fran Beckett is currently Chief Executive of Transform Southwark, an umbrella body for Southwark churches and a Board Member for Peckham Vision, a resident-led community organisation. In January 2014, Fran also became a trustee for Action Tutoring, a registered charity, providing free tuition to GCSE pupils in inner-city schools across England. Fran has a background with national not-for-profit organisations, chairing various national Boards and UK Government advisory groups. She is a charity consultant, speaker, writer, and trainer in community action, leadership and governance development, and is locally involved as a community activist.

Richard Berrett

Richard Berrett is a Consultant to Close Brothers Property Finance, having previously been an executive director in its Property Division. Richard has a long career in housing development finance and has been involved in funding residential development for over 30 years. He also has strong experience in risk management, compliance and due diligence. Richard is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers

Steve Brown

Steve Brown has over 25 years’ experience in various Executive roles within the public and private sectors with a strong track record of delivery. Steve also has a wealth of Non-Executive experience across health, regeneration, construction, social housing and finance, including the Stamford and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, East Midlands Tourist Board, Regional Development Agency, CBI, North Midlands Construction and the National Trust.

Chris Crook

Chris Crook is a development professional specialising in residential development and house building. Chris has owned his own consultancy since 2011 providing services for clients involved in planning, development, house building and finance. He was previously Managing Director with 28 years’ experience with Countryside Properties. He is a Chartered Surveyor and serving member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors Planning and Development Committee.

David Young

David Young CBE worked in the Ministry of Defence for twenty years, including a secondment to the Cabinet Office, before joining the John Lewis Partnership where he became Finance Director and Deputy Chairman. He also served as a Director of Ocado Group plc from 2000 to 2012. On retiring he chaired the Higher Education Funding Council for England from 2001 to 2007. David is currently Treasurer of Sheffield University and a member of its Council.