John Beresford appointed as Buckland’s Managing Director


Buckland Development Ltd (Buckland), the Hampshire-based development company behind the 6,000 home Garden Village of Welborne in Fareham, has appointed Grainger PLC’s John Beresford as Managing Director.

Bringing over 20 years’ experience as a developer in the residential sector, including the delivery of large-scale complex schemes, John was previously responsible for running the strategic land business at Grainger Plc. Having worked on large development projects including Wellesley in Aldershot, and Berewood, Waterlooville; John brings in-depth experience and best practice knowledge relevant to the creation of a large new community such as Welborne.

Whilst at Grainger Plc, John also set up and managed Grainger Trust Ltd which, as a subsidiary of Grainger Plc, is a Registered Provider of affordable homes. Prior to that, John started his career working for Bryant Homes and Taylor Woodrow.

Now joining the team at Buckland, John will be driving plans to realise its vision for Welborne, the largest proposed new development in the South of England, which, working with Fareham Borough Council will provide up to 6,000 new homes over the next 20 years. It is the most advanced of the 14 Garden Villages allocated by Government in January 2017.

John said: “I’m excited to join the Buckland team at this pivotal time for the Welborne project, and for Buckland more generally. Buckland is a lead developer with a unique approach that unlike other property developers, focuses on longer-term investment and stewardship, rather than quick profits. I share Buckland’s consistent vision for, and commitment to, the creation of a new community that meets local needs, and more importantly, a place which will stand the test of time.

“Buckland is already breaking the mould through its delivery approach and quality design for Welborne, and I am thrilled to be leading the plans through the next stages to deliver an attractive and sustainable new community that is designed to respect its natural surroundings and benefit the wider community.”

Buckland represents the vision of Mark Thistlethwayte and his family. The Thistlethwayte family control and manage the 7,000-acre Southwick Estate, part of which has been allocated for Welborne by Fareham Borough Council.

As custodians of the Southwick Estate for almost 500 years, taking a long-term vision for the delivery of the Welborne development is a natural step for the Thistlethwayte family, and one that John will be responsible for driving in his new role.

Mark Thistlethwayte, Principal of Buckland said: “We are very pleased to welcome John to the team at Buckland. He brings a wealth of experience in the industry, having worked on similar large-scale schemes to Welborne, and his background will be invaluable as we look to progress its plans through the next stages in the coming months.

“The housing market needs a new delivery solution that is not focused on numbers at the expense of the community, quality and place-making. With John’s leadership, we will develop projects like Welborne that meet the needs of the local area, whilst creating a blueprint for developers to deliver homes in the future that truly benefit the local community.”

Plans for Welborne include a healthcare centre, community centres, a variety of sports facilities and integrated, well-considered green space of different types. Early investment in infrastructure is also key, including the remodelling of the M27 J10 and works to the A32 to create an ‘all moves’ junction.

Buckland’s Outline Planning Application is currently under consideration by the Council and, subject to approval, Buckland intends to work on phase one plans during 2018, with a view to starting on-site by 2019. It is anticipated to take 25+ years to develop Welborne in its entirety, which will be developed in phases.