Dan rejoined the practice in 2019 as an Associate Director having gained some excellent experience in smaller North West firms. Following graduation from Liverpool John Moores University he obtained his RIBA accreditation at Cassisy + Ashton in 2006.

    Dan has experience in a range of sectors and has delivered schemes for Booths, BAE and several Universities. He is also very proud to have been instrumental in the delivery of many local Church schemes, including Preston Minster, and enjoys seeing architecture play a part in changing people lives.

    Homes fit for purpose has always been an area of interest, and his thesis ‘Homes for the Future’ formed part of his Masters submission. In recent years his attention has focused on designing specialist housing for Autism, Dementia and Ageing Care, and he is currently researching Co-Housing as a model to address a wider health and wellbeing agenda.

    Dan also has responsibility for Business Development and Marketing, enjoying the strategic aspects of this, the opportunity to explore new ideas and the friendships made in the process – though he has had to start running to compensate for the additional ‘drinks and nibbles’!

    He is married to Nicki and has two sons, they love to spend time together in the Lake District walking, kayaking and simply being outdoors. Dan is an active member at an ‘amazing’ Church and alongside his wife coordinates the Youth and Families work.

    Dan Thorpe

    Associate Director


    Sarah joined C+A in January 2017 as an Associate and brings 20 years’ experience of successfully delivering projects from inception to completion across the education, commercial, community and residential sectors including  the  first  cross  laminated  timber  new  build  primary  school  in  Cheshire,  which  gained  a  Chester  Civic  Trust  Award  in  2014.

    Sarah strongly  believes  in  promoting  excellent  &  sustainable  design,  from  the  outset  of  a  project  and  the  ensuing  social,  cultural,  environmental,  health  and  benefits  to  the  economy  it  can  facilitate. 

    Sarah enjoys the challenge of resolving complex issues through strategic planning, response to place, stakeholder engagement, and the integration of innovative and sustainable solutions, whilst championing a collaborative approach to project delivery, embracing stakeholders to integrate, manage and realise their aspirations within programme and budget.

    Sarah  has a  keen  interest  in  contributing  to  the  future  vision  and  development  of  the  built  environment  and  sits  on  Cheshire West and Chester’s  Design  Review  Panel. 

    Outside  of  work,  Sarah is  a  keen  cyclist  and  enjoys  outdoor  pursuits,  nature,  travel,  literature  and  cooking.

    Sarah Pegg

    Associate Director


    Stephen joined Cassidy + Ashton in 2015 as a Part 1 assistant. He has since studied and graduated with a Masters of Architecture from UCLan and is now working towards Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) accreditation to become a fully qualified chartered architect.

    Outside of work Stephen is a proud family man and has a passion for music, photography and travel in between working on the renovation of his family home.

    Stephen Peploe

    Architectural Assistant


    Paul joined Cassidy + Ashton in July 2019 after he graduated with a Master of Architecture with Merit from UCLan.

    Since graduation he is now working towards Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) accreditation to become a fully qualified chartered architect.

    Paul provides support for the architecture and design team at the Preston office.

    He is a fan of ‘regionalism’ design and believes this is the most challenging, but interesting style which amalgamates historical and contemporary design philosophies. Paul’s aim is to develop a design portfolio which reflects the distinctiveness and uniqueness of a places’ heritage, but contributes to the futuristic and innovative cues of contemporary design.

    A keen footballer, Paul plays centre-back for Galgate FC in the West Lancashire League as well as local team Anchorsholme FC, part of the Blackpool Sunday Alliance League.

    His ever-growing experience with the practice is allowing himself to develop his overall architectural vocabulary towards design. He hopes that his time at the Practice will be a challenging & exciting journey.

    Paul Drinnan

    Architectural Assistant


    Ben completed his undergraduate degree in Human Geography at Liverpool John Moores University in 2012. Following this he completed a Masters in Civic Design at the University of Liverpool, the oldest Town Planning school in the world.

    Whilst completing his Masters degree he worked part time with Civitas Planning Ltd and continued working with them for five years post-graduation.  Ben has a wide range of experience and specialises in obtaining planning permission for developments in the Green Belt.

    In his spare time Ben likes to go rock climbing and cycling.

    Ben Thornley

    Chartered Town Planner


    Aaron joined Cassidy + Ashton in May 2019 as a Part 2 Architectural Assistant.

    Aaron is keen to complete his Part 3 and become a qualified Architect, his main goal is to lead a project from inception to completion.

    With his free time, Aaron enjoys football, cycling and playing the drums.

    Aaron Williams

    Architectural Assistant


    Chris joined Cassidy + Ashton in 2016 having spent the majority of his career working in North Wales following the completion of his HNC.

    Having gained his qualifications Chris proceeded to work on and run a number of projects from concept through to completion, with budgets ranging from £100k to £10m. His experience includes both refurbishment and new build in a wide range of sectors.

    Most recently he has run a project in line with BIM Level 2 and is looking to gain more experience in this area.

    In his spare time he is a keen cyclist, both mountain and road.  He also enjoys exploring the countryside on foot and is a keen cook.

    Chris O’Hanlon

    Architectural Technologist


    Andrew joined Cassidy + Ashton in early 2016.

    He has many years experience in his chosen field after graduating from university in 2011. Working predominantly in Revit, he has experience in residential, commercial and the education sector.

    Andrew has been a construction specialise for several years, working on multi million pound projects, working on schemes from inception to completion.

    Andrew Morris

    Architectural Technologist


    After attending Stretford Grammar School, Peter began work in a small architectural practice in Manchester, where he was employed as an architectural assistant for five years. During this period, Peter attended day release courses at Manchester Building College and became a qualified architectural technician, providing a sound technical basis for informing building designs.

    This led to being accepted on the B.A. Architecture course at the University of Central England in Birmingham, where Peter achieved the qualifications of B.A. (Hons) Architecture, Post Graduate Diploma, MA in Architecture, and ultimately ARIBA. Peter joined Cassidy + Ashton in 1997 and has since worked on a wide range of commercial, retail, residential, education, community and leisure-related projects. In 2001 Peter became an Associate before becoming an equity Director in 2011.

    Since 1997, Peter has lived in the South Lakes area and has become involved in a number of projects across Cumbria and the Lake District, Northumberland and North Yorkshire. This has helped provide a new geographical range to the Cassidy + Ashton area of works, which now stretches across the UK.

    Peter has experience of dealing with a wide range of project types and size. This includes liaising with English Heritage and other interested parties in both historically sensitive and high impact proposals, including Grade 1 listed buildings.

    Peter Harris

    Director, Architect


    Phil joined the Cassidy + Ashton as an under-graduate Building Surveyor in 1988, whilst studying on the RICS accredited building surveyors’ degree course at UCLan.

    He graduated from University and was elected a member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors in 1994.

    In 1997, Phil was awarded Associateship of the Cassidy + Ashton with the responsibility for the management and development of the building surveying division of the Preston office. This appointment enabled him to further develop the education, Ecclesiastical, commercial and residence arm of the practice, and forge links with commercial agents, diocese property managers and residential property owners.

    Philip Gornall

    Director, Chartered Building Surveyor


    Richard is a senior technician with 20 years of experience in many sectors of construction including healthcare projects.

    With detailed knowledge of construction standards and legislation he leads the technical design on major projects. He has both AutoCAD and BIM experience.

    Richard Downes

    Senior Architectural Technologist


    Susan joined Cassidy + Ashton in January 2015 as an associate, and brings with her more than 10 years of experience of delivering projects across all sectors within the industry.

    Susan enjoys the challenge of taking projects from inception to completion. Working closely with the client to realise their aspirations, she takes pride in delivering inspiring, yet cost effective solutions, tailored to their specific needs and the opportunities afforded by the site.

    She has a keen interest in conservation and reuse, and is currently working to achieve Conservation Architect status.

    Outside work, Susan enjoys spending time with her two young children, taking them for walks in the countryside, exploring her love for photography and making birthday cakes.

    Susan McBain

    Associate Director


    Claire joined Cassidy + Ashton on work experience in the summer of 2012, during which time she concluded a Masters of Civic Design at the University of Liverpool.

    Later, in June 2013 Claire then accepted a permanent role within the practice.

    Claire became a Chartered Member of the Royal Town Planning Institute in November 2017.

    At Cassidy + Ashton on a day-to-day basis Claire participates in the preparation and management of a variety of planning applications, with experience of working on a broad range of projects, including; heritage assets, residential schemes and major new educational facilities

    Claire Parker

    Chartered Town Planner


    Carl joined Cassisy + Ashton in 2000 having previously spent eight years at a very small practice specialising in dwelling alterations.

    Since joining, Carl has completed numerous education projects, several churches, car showrooms, several heritage projects, such as the Grand Theatre in Blackpool and various healthcare projects, such as alterations and extensions at St Catherine’s Hospice, both in CAD and Revit.

    Carl is a keen photographer and enjoys walking, cycling, and you can often find him browsing record shops and fairs hunting for rare CDs and vinyl to add to his collection.

    Carl Myerscough

    Associate, Senior Architectural Technologist


    Alistair joined the practice in 1988 having graduated from the University of Manchester, School of Architecture. He was awarded a partnership in 2002 and appointed Chairman in 2014.

    Whilst the majority of his portfolio is in the education sector Alistair has wide ranging experience in sports and leisure, defence, commercial and retail and ecclesiastical and heritage. In support of his specialist knowledge, at all levels in education, Alistair has served as a school governor since 1997 (Arnold School, Blackpool now AKS Lytham) and is Chair of the Buildings and Facilities Committee.

    Based on the Fylde Coast and having delivered several significant projects in the area, Alistair has helped the practice secure a number of awards for excellence in design, notably with the Blackpool Civic Trust.

    Alistair firmly believes that customer care is the foundation behind Cassidy + Ashton’s success and places great emphasis on a personable and friendly approach to deliver an A+ service. Theodore Roosevelt once said “nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care.”

    Alistair Baines

    Chairman, Architect


    As a Chartered Town Planner and a Chartered Environmentalist, Alban qualified in 1992 and has since gone on to work on a huge variety of projects from urban extensions, to major transport projects and the occasional gritty appeal.

    The 1,400 dwelling Whyndyke Farm urban extension won the North West RTPI Award for Planning Excellence in 2018 as did the Preston Bus Station Refurbishment in 2019 but Alban is equally comfortable working on more modest schemes including renewable energy projects, having obtained consent for one of the first combined solar farm and landfill gas projects in the country, urban regeneration or community schemes, with a particular skill in Environmental Impact Assessments.

    His experience covers all sectors including residential, commercial, retail, educational and leisure developments.

    Married to Marie-Louise with whom he has had three children, Alban enjoys his time away from the office with his family whilst also enjoying birding, travel, the occasional run and the odd pint of real ale.

    Alban Cassidy

    Director, Chartered Town Planner


    Paul started working for Cassidy + Ashton in 1999 as a Building Surveyor, he lives in Northwich with his wife Carol and has two grown up daughters.

    He spends his free time showing horses and ponies, enjoys a nice glass of wine having attended several wine tasting courses!

    Paul Burrows

    Building Surveyor


    Neil joined Cassidy + Ashton at the age of 18 in 1985 having completed a BTEC HNC in building studies and was promoted to Associate in charge of technical development throughout the group in 2000.

    He is an associate member of the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists.

    He has worked on both public and private sector projects over the years with major clients such as BAe Systems, Tesco and Lancashire County Council.

    Neil brings an enthusiasm to challenge and drive forward modern methods of construction within the practice. His technical experience and project leadership is second to none with a committed desire to drive forward standards.

    Neil Aaron

    Associate, Senior Architectural Technologist


    Dave is a Director of Cassidy + Ashton and has been working as a building surveyor since 1998, and has been a member of RICS since 2002. He has been involved in all aspects of surveying from building and defect surveys through to new-build and refurbishment projects.

    Dave established and developed Cassidy + Ashton’s Chester and Mold offices, where he has been managing the building surveying projects since 2006. His main areas of specialism are design and management of refurbishment works, defect analysis, project management and disabled access reports/works.

    Dave consistently meets clients’ deadlines and delivers results through close client contact, consistent management procedures, expertise and good customer relationship.

    Dave has a wealth of experience completing both new-build and refurbishment projects for major clients in the commercial, education, healthcare and private sectors. He is also an approved Principal Designer and CDM adviser to clients.

    Dave Owen

    Director, Chartered Building Surveyor


    Emily recently started working at Cassidy + Ashton and is keen to learn more about what happens within the company.

    Emily is currently attending Mid-Cheshire College on day release course in Level 3 Advanced Engineering.

    In her spare time Emily enjoys seeing family and friends and also likes going abroad to the sunny weather, whilst in winter weather Emily is a keen snowboarder!

    Emily Lloyd

    Apprentice Technician


    Guy joined C+A’s Chester office in 2009 as a Chartered Town Planner with 20 years’ experience in private consultancy, during which time he has project managed an extensive number of planning applications of varying scale and covering all market sectors. His role as Lead Planner sees him prepare all necessary supporting planning documentation, inclusive of Environmental Statements and manage an extensive range of sub-consultants. With a Masters in Environmental Planning from Liverpool John Moores University behind him he cut his teeth in the Professional Services Division of a commercial and residential agency on the south coast.

    In 2004 he moved to Cheshire to take on a lead role in the western region Planning team of Carter Jonas, a national firm of property consultants. With a solid understanding of urban design and experienced in the masterplan process for major sites, Guy is also well versed in the strategic promotion of land through the Development Plan process, inclusive if sustainability analysis, written representations and appearance at Examination and subsequent application process.

    Away from the office Guy enjoys the occasional round of golf and getting out on his bike. The latter spurred him on to be part of a relay team for a triathlon sprint event at Media City, which ended up raising over £1,400 for a Chester-based charity. Guy is also a Governor at Malpas Alport Primary School.

    Guy Evans

    Director, Town Planner


    Heidi started working for the company in December 2013 and ensures the Chester office is running smoothly day-to-day!

    Outside work Heidi is a social butterfly who values spare time with friends and family and the occasional glass of wine.

    As a huge music fan, mainly rock and metal, she also enjoys going to the cinema to catch the latest films and making the most of her Netflix subscription.

    Heidi Stringer



    Ian joined Cassidy + Ashton in 2003 whilst studied at UCLan for his BSc (Hons) in Architectural Technology.

    He has continued to develop his skills having gained a strong technical background and varied experience enabling him to manage the design process from initial concepts through to full detailed solutions.

    Key Attributes: Technical translation of the design concept; Ensures the Clients expectations are met; Co-ordinates all construction issues.

    Ian Riches

    MCIAT and Chartered Architectural Technologist


    Ian joined the practice in 1984 and has progressed from trainee technician to associate senior technologist. He has worked in a varied array of fields, including leisure, education and housing. Major clients he has worked with include BAE, Tesco and Punch Taverns.

    His technical experience has helped in assisting many of the junior technical staff through their educational studies.

    Presently Ian is the Senior Technical advisor to Stonyhurst College, liaising closely with the client in all aspects of new build and maintenance of the Grade I / II Listed buildings

    Ian Woods

    Associate, Senior Architectural Technologist


    Jason was a qualified engineer before switching professions to Building Surveying, he joined the practice in 2004 after working at two other companies following his graduation from the University of Central Lancashire in 2002.

    He has a keen interest in Building Conservation delivering several key projects over the years, one of which was runner up in the RICS conservation awards. His ability to strengthen relationship with existing clients as well as attracting new business to the practice has made him a key member of the Building Surveying team.

    Outside of work Jason spends most of his time with his partner and two daughters and still has an interest in engineering, although it’s mainly to do with cars! He has helped repair and restore friends and families cars as well as building a Caterham Seven a few years back.

    Jason Short

    Associate, Building Surveyor


    Chris joined Cassidy + Ashton in 2001 and qualified with distinction as an Architect in 2005.

    In 2015 Chris became a Director of the Practice and over the years gained considerable experience mainly in Aviation, Commercial, Education and Healthcare projects up to £15m.

    He enjoys the role of Social Secretary at C+A and proud of his two children who know how to spend his money!

    Chris Taylor

    Director, Architect


    Lawrence first joined the Practice in 2000 shortly after completing his first honours degree at Queens University in Belfast and prior to finishing his studies at John Moore’s University in Liverpool. In 2007 he became an Associate with a particular interest in advancing the quality and level of design at the practice. As an outstanding project leader his role on developments is to work with all the ‘team’ to ensure a very high standard of design is provided integrating architectural, environmental, structural and financial requirements. Lawrence became a Director in 2016 and continues to grow a diverse portfolio of clients across the region.

    Lawrence brings an architectural passion, drive and desire to provide first-class developments tailored to the context of the site and the client’s vision. He has substantial educational experience at delivering modern, exciting facilities that drive forward advancement in educational teaching and is very keen to see good quality architecture help influence and accommodate the modern and changing needs of society. His experience covers a broad spectrum of sectors including educational, commercial, residential, conservation and industrial.

    Recent examples of his work include the design for Preston’s new Porsche car showroom, Troutbeck Crescent social housing for Blackpool Council, The Lotus special needs school in Blackpool and work for Manchester Metropolitan University.

    Lawrence was instrumental in Cassidy + Ashton winning a prestigious RIBA National Award for the work on Preston Bus Station and has helped secure many other awards including Civic Trust awards and RTPI awards.

    Lawrence McBurney

    Director, Architect


    Joe joined C+A in March 2015 as a Graduate Building Surveyor after achieving a 1st class honours degree at the University of Central Lancashire. He has recently started working towards achieving Chartered status with the RICS and has experience mainly working within the educational sector.

    Prior to University, Joe lived in Québec, Canada, where he became a professional ski coach with the CSIA/AMSC, CSCF and CADS. Joe is also a keen golfer, with previous associations with Lancashire Golf. Outside of work, Joe enjoys an active lifestyle with his friends and family, and partakes in various activities including playing the Piano, Cycling, Running and Swimming.

    Joe Walmsley

    Graduate Building Surveyor


    Michael joined the practice as a Chartered Architect in 1978 having previously worked for Lancashire County Council.

    He became an Equity Partner in 1986, and was elected as Senior Partner in April, 2004.

    Michael is also a RIBA Accredited Specialist Conservation Architect, recognised by English Heritage to carry out grant aided projects to listed buildings.

    Michael has worked on a varied portfolio of projects during his career including: Educational, ecclesiastical, residential, recreational, commercial, retail and defence projects. In more recent years, he has developed a considerable experience in both education and conservation based projects.

    His major clients include: Blackburn Diocese, Liverpool Archdiocese, Salford Diocese, Lancaster Diocese, The Methodist Church, University of Central Lancashire, Stonyhurst College, BAE Systems, Tesco plc, and Brookhouse plc.

    Michael is appointed as:
    •  RIBA Assessor to the Conservation Register.
    •  Cathedral Architect at the Cathedral Church of St John the Evangelist.
    •  Architect to Stonyhurst College, and St Mary’s Hall, Clitheroe.
    •  Area Surveyor to Liverpool Archdiocese in Lancashire.
    •  A member of the Historic Churches Committee for the North West.

    Michael Hartley

    Consultant Architect

  • Royal Institute of British Architects - RIBA
  • Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors - RICS
  • Royal Town Planning Institute - RTPI
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Thank you

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