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SGP’s long-serving Chairman steps back


19th December 2023

Ian Yallop, SGP Chairman, will be retiring as Partner and stepping back from day-to-day duties at the AJ100 architectural practice at the end of 2023. He will remain involved in supporting the Partners on key legacy projects, primarily in front-end masterplanning.

Ian joined SGP in 1993 as an Architectural Assistant, whilst still at Leicester Polytechnic studying part time for his Part 2 accreditation. SGP’s office was in London Road, much smaller then and run along traditional lines with tea breaks, drawing boards and CAD in its infancy. The scope of work was similar to today, with a variety of projects in residential, retail, leisure and commercial sectors.

Ian was primarily responsible for SGP’s commercial and masterplanning projects, managing a team with considerable experience in designing and delivering complex schemes from office buildings to large regional business parks, amongst others.

Says Ian: “It has been an honour and privilege to work at SGP and to help build an incredible business that we can all be proud of. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to be part of the SGP journey and, whilst there will be challenges ahead, I am confident that the practice will continue to evolve and thrive.

Whilst change is natural, I see SGP as the constant, the rock-solid foundation and framework through which committed, talented and passionate people are enabled to move up through the practice and take on the challenges of the future.”

James Nicholls, Managing Partner at SGP, said: ‘Ian has been an inspiration to many at SGP including his ability to find positive outcomes in the most challenging of circumstances. His boundless energy will be missed. He has provided support and mentorship to us all during the last 30 years and he and his team have masterplanned, designed and delivered many exemplar schemes of which we can be proud. Whilst Ian won’t be leaving us entirely, I would like to thank him for his support, friendship, leadership and unwavering commitment to, and custodianship of, SGP which has helped make it the flourishing practice that it is today.’

Concludes Ian: “I have spent the majority of my working life at SGP and it will be a huge wrench to step away from my day-to-day involvement. I will miss the people – colleagues and clients – who have made my career at SGP such a positive experience in an open and supportive environment. I started as an architectural assistant and became Partner and Chairman of a strong and successful practice which is a testament to the open culture at the centre of SGP’s ethos. As a Partner, I have been involved in developing the business, driving the growth in both income, diversity of work and staff. As a custodian of SGP, I am immensely proud to be leaving the practice in the steady and capable hands of my successors whom I have worked with for many years. SGP will face challenges ahead, as we have done in the past, but has the staff, management and passion to keep SGP moving onward for another 30 years – at least.”