The North of England

 

The BECG North team has decades of experience working to support investment into the region’s built environment. We are actively involved in tackling some of the major policy issues facing the North: from levelling-up to tackling the housing crisis or from better transport connectivity to achieving Net Zero, BECG is doing our bit to help build back better.

Our local knowledge, understanding and insight of the North’s political landscape and communities, allows us to tailor engagement programmes, key messages and campaigns to enhance your communications. We understand what makes people tick and how best to tell your story, delivering real added value to your project team through insight, analysis and expert advice. We combine experience, insight, influence and innovation to ensure your ideas change minds when it matters most.

Our multi-disciplinary team offers expertise in public affairs, planning communications, stakeholder engagement, corporate communications, government relations, public relations and marketing.

Our work

Our senior team

Kevin Whitmore

Director - Head of North & Midlands

Matthew Crisp

Director

Carole Riley

Senior Account Director

Sean Fielding

Account Director

Jamie Gordon

Board Director – Infrastructure & Energy

Esme Roberts

Account Director

James Leavesley

Director - Social Media

Will Balme

Digital Client Delivery Lead

Charli Edwards

Head of Design & Creative Services

Kevin Whitmore

Director - Head of North & Midlands

Kevin is an experienced local government communications consultant who specialises in planning communications, political advocacy and community campaigning for clients across the built environment.

He has over 12 years’ experience working with both public and private sector clients and leads BECG’s North & Midlands team.  He works with local communities and their elected representatives to understand the need for and build acceptance of changes to the local built environment.

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Matthew Crisp

Director

Matthew Crisp is a Director at BECG leading our North team in Manchester. Having held in-house and agency roles, he has over a decade of communications and stakeholder engagement experience across the public, private and third sector.

He has devised and overseen the delivery of strategies to secure planning consents for projects covering the energy, transport, residential, retail and regeneration sectors including a number of Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects requiring Development Consent Orders.

Former Communications Manager at Transport for the North, his experience spanned the organisation’s corporate communications and engagement functions from inception through to its establishment as England’s first Sub-national Transport Body.

Outside of work, Matthew sits on the board of trustees for UK-based charity Health Care South Sudan with responsibility for communications and public affairs.

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Carole Riley

Senior Account Director

Carole specialises in community relations and issues management. She has worked with energy sector clients since 1994 and previously spent more than ten years with the CEGB.

Carole has been involved in providing communications support for the permitting and construction of power stations (gas and biomass), wind farms, airports and waste management facilities and has been the lead account director handling communications during the construction of the Carrington Power Station project in Trafford.

Carole has also been involved with the stakeholder communications and public relations for a number of other major gas-fired power station developments including Rocksavage in Runcorn, Spalding 1 and 2 in Lincolnshire and the Gateway Energy Centre in Thurrock.

 

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Sean Fielding

Account Director

Sean has direct experience of Strategic Leadership roles in Local Government, having served for three years as the Leader of a Greater Manchester Local Authority and a Member of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority.

Alongside his roles in Local Government Sean also has previously been employed as a Research and Communications Officer for a senior Labour MP and within the Policy and Communications Team at a Greater Manchester Council neighbouring that to which he was elected.

Both Sean’s elected roles and previous employment involved engaging directly with stakeholders and communities on often contentious issues, including planning. He appreciates the importance of tailoring messaging for different audiences and the value of identifying local advocates as part of campaigns seeking to chorale support for planning and investment proposals.

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Jamie Gordon

Board Director – Infrastructure & Energy

Jamie leads BECG’s work in the energy and infrastructure sectors. He has over 25 years’ experience of delivering strategic and operational communications programmes and currently advises on some of the UK’s largest projects from offshore wind farms to high speed rail, interconnectors to highways schemes.

In addition to his role at BECG, Jamie is a Director at Community Energy South and also sits on the Winchester Against Climate Change (WinACC) advisory panel for renewables.

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Esme Roberts

Account Director

Esme has breadth of experience in property, from large projects like the regeneration of Elephant and Castle town centre, Anfield in Liverpool and Rochester in Kent, to housing  associations including Places for People, Your Housing Group and One Manchester.

She takes pride in creating strategic communications plans to help them achieve their key goals and deliver new homes and amenities for a wide range of communities.  Esme’s work on the campaign ‘can you hear me from up here?’ with the housing association, One Manchester, was nominated for two industry awards. The successful campaign was designed to help those suffering from loneliness and depression in One Manchester’s communities. It gained widespread national print and broadcast coverage as well as regional print coverage.

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James Leavesley

Director - Social Media

James Leavesley is founder and CEO of Social Media Management Platform, CrowdControlHQ, and since its sale in January 2021 to BECG Group, has also taken up the role of Director Social Media.

James has spent the last 10 years working with some of the most high-profile public and private sector brands in the UK helping them to embrace and deliver enterprise social media- these brands Include SERCO, Redrow Homes, Greater Manchester Police, Arriva Buses, North Lanarkshire Council, Hyde Housing and the Bannatyne Group.

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Will Balme

Digital Client Delivery Lead

Will is BECG’s digital client delivery lead. He has 12 years-experience in branding and digital programmes working with a range of clients and agencies.

He has a passion for understanding client’s objectives and translating this into meaningful digital experiences that make an impact.

From working on digital experiences within retail environments, to managing brands website and digital transformation programmes, he has worked with global brands to create digital experiences that are rooted in strategy and insight and that drive measurable results.

His role at BECG will be in working with clients from the initial discovery and project setup, defining their objectives across digital touchpoints, understanding customer and stakeholder needs, and then designing and building solutions that deliver excellent engagement across a full range of digital services.

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Charli Edwards

Head of Design & Creative Services

With over 15 years’ experience in both ‘in house’ and ‘agency’ environments, Charli is a passionate creative leader with a proven track record of delivering successful campaigns from conception to completion whilst leading, expanding and mentoring teams of creatives. Here at BECG as Head of Design, she utilises her previous experience working within various industries (including automotive, financial, television and sport) to shape strategy and deliver exciting, innovative solutions.

She is also a published creative having been both featured in and written for various design magazines including Advanced Photoshop & Photoshop Creative and has spent time working in the US whilst managing an international network of agencies and creatives for a global Sports corporation.

Manchester

WeWork
Dalton Place
29 John Dalton Street
Manchester
M2 6FW

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Leeds

No. 1 Leeds
26 Whitehall
Leeds
LS12 1BE

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