Guy Bowyer new Chief Executive

Trustees are pleased to announce that current Conservation Architect, Guy Bowyer, has been appointed to replace Jonathan Bryant as Chief Executive with effect from 1 October 2023.

Jonathan, who has been in the role since March 2018, announced his intention to stand down during April this year, following which Trustees instigated a thorough and open recruitment process through Starfish recruitment consultants of Leeds and London. Guy was one of four strong candidates interviewed during September this year.

Guy graduated from Newcastle University with an honours degree in Architecture followed by RIBA Part 1 while at Shepherd Design in York, and RIBA Part 2 within his family’s firm Bowyer Consulting. From 2007 he was Senior Architect at W.R.Dunn in York, a role through which his interest in and experience of conservation work developed over a series of projects: a rural estate in Teesdale, the Ministry of Justice in the South West of England and, closer to home, projects at Bishopthorpe Palace and Monkgate’s grade II* Middleton House conversion.

In 2015 Guy joined the small staff team at York Conservation Trust with the immediate tasks of managing a substantial programme of improvements at York Theatre Royal and dealing with major ceiling issues at York's Assembly Rooms Between 2016 and 2018 he prepared and managed the conservation led repurposing of the former Robson & Cooper premises on Lendal, and from 2018 to 2020 a wholesale scheme of restoration and conservation at no. 69, 71 Micklegate. Also in 2020 Guy completed his RIBA Conservation Architect accreditation.

More recently, Guy has successfully undertaken an extensive programme of conservation work at the De Grey complex of buildings on St Leonard’s Place; the Trust moved its office to De Grey House in May of this year.

“I am delighted to have the opportunity to continue my work at York Conservation Trust in the CEO role. Over the last five years we have focussed on more and better standards of conservation work across our current estate, rather than taking on additional challenges and the advantages of that strategy are showing through. Though small, we have a good staff team in place; I thank them, the consultant resources we use and the trade and contractors we engage, for their continued support. ”

Guy Bowyer

James Morrell, current Chair of the Trustees congratulated Guy on a successful job application and recruitment process and Jonathan Bryant for his five and a half years at the helm. 

“The Trust has benefitted tremendously from Jonathan’s experience and leadership over this period and we are grateful to him for navigating us through the pandemic with a clear and steady hand in what was a very turbulent and uncertain time. We all wish him well in his future endeavours.”

James Morrell, Chair of York Conservation Trust Trustees

Jonathan Bryant will remain a trustee of York Consortium for Craft and Conservation and maintain his wider links with York; he is about to start his own building conservation project in a fishing village on Scotland’s east coast and remains a Director at Roseangle, a company providing consulting services to the heritage sector.

“It has been a privilege to be involved with York Conservation Trust and to lead a programme of change in an organisation of pre 1945 origin. I only wish it had been possible to meet the founder Dr John Bowes Morrell - a far sighted, mover and shaker, without whom, there can be little doubt that much of York would have been lost. Today statutory protection for listed buildings, climate factors and occupational regulations means the conservation challenges are very different from 1945. ”

“I am pleased to have contributed to the Trust’s continuing process of transition including collaborations with other organisations and the wider avenues of public engagement that arise from it; Guy, I know, is determined to build further on this in the years ahead.”

Jonathan Bryant

Guy working with colourist Nicola Young on the De Grey Rooms exterior in early 2023.

Allyson Butler receiving her 2023 York Conservation Trust MA Dissertation Prize from Guy. 

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