Neil Walmsley, HATCH, p HATCH

Neil Walmsley is the UK and Europe regional director of urban solutions at HATCH. Credit: via HATCH

HATCH appoints regional director of urban solutions

Neil Walmsley will lead the global consultancy’s UK and European team dedicated to helping governments and large organisations craft strategies that deliver on economic, social value, and sustainability goals.

Walmsley has more than 25 years of experience in the development world, having spent 24 years at Arup where he headed up teams in Australia, Singapore, and the Middle East.

As HATCH’s regional director of urban solutions for the UK and Europe, Walmsley will lead a 20-strong team based in Manchester and London.

“Our purpose is to help public and private sector clients to conceive and deliver thriving communities for the benefit of all, Walmsley said.

“To do that we help clients to shape their policy agendas, define their strategies, justify investments, secure funding, deliver on their goals – especially their social impact goals – and ultimately evaluate the effectiveness of the outcomes that come from that.”

Walmsley is especially passionate about exploring how planning, land use, and transport can promote inclusive growth and economic regeneration.

Walmsley said HATCH’s slogan “entrepreneurs with a technical soul” resonated with him and attracted him to the role.

“The process of development is a constant iteration between knowing what to do – the technical component – and also knowing how to get it done – the entrepreneurial side,” he said. “It is always a multi-stakeholder process that involves finding ways to influence and shape collective direction.”

Walmsley’s goal is to help bolster and diversify HATCH’s UK activity.

“Hatch has over 10,000 people around the world – but a modest UK presence,” he said.

“I have an interesting opportunity to build upon an existing team to create greater capacity, provide a greater range of services, and have greater degree of influence in urban development broadly in the UK.”

Current clients for HATCH include Homes England, Legal & General, and Aviva. The urban solutions team in the UK also has several exciting projects in the pipeline, Walmsley said.

“We’re doing work on onshore wind in North America, developing the case for the Bakerloo Line in London, supporting an African government who wants to develop a more robust project appraisal methodology, and, locally, we’ve worked with Bury Council as they’ve developed their economic strategy,” he described.

HATCH is employee-owned and headquartered in Canada. In addition to urban solutions, the company provides services in engineering, environmental, project management, and technology.

HATCH’s Manchester office is at York House. The organisation is active within the city region, acting as a core sponsor for the Future of Greater Manchester initiative. Walmsley will also be part of the HATCH contingent attending UKREiiF in May.

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