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


    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


    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


    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


    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


    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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