ECE’s global head of foodservice on being mentored by his father and his obsession with ice cream.
I had to fly to Luxembourg for a project there from City Airport. The little turboprop aircraft are fine in calm conditions but we bounced and tilted our way down the runway and I really thought we weren’t going to clear the water. Even the stewardess was sick.
I think it must be joining German developer ECE. I am happier in my work than I have ever been and I now get to do whole projects. I can influence the design, the build, the leasing, the operations and the culture of our business for positive effect.
Starting the company Coverpoint from the back bedroom of my house in Maidenhead and building it into the leading foodservice consultancy worldwide, when it was acquired by JLL. This type of consulting did not exist before so I feel I helped create that part of the industry.
I had the pleasure of meeting Gordon Ramsay, who actually is a really motivating person. He said: “Put your head down and work hard.” I have carried that work ethic with me since my training days as a chef.
When I became worldwide president of the Foodservice Consultants Society International, we were in Chicago in the winter. We had attended a formal dinner and then got into the Studio Paris Nightclub. It was one epic night - and morning.
My dad - he has mentored me for years. He was a great cricketer, hence the name Coverpoint for my consulting business. He also bought the famous drum business Premier Percussion as it was failing and turned it around, then sold it very successfully. He always looks at things from a unique perspective.
Bluewater [in Kent]. I lived and breathed it for years and it feels like part of my family. It still has lots of potential.
John Whittaker. I had the pleasure of working with him on the Trafford Centre. I learned a lot and I have a huge respect for him. He always remembers names, details and current deals and has his finger on the pulse of everything.
The constantly changing designs, spaces and places that we build. I love reusing property, and when we blend old and new together it doesn’t get any better than that.
A street-food guy in a van knocking out great food to willing crowds. The film Chef summed it up beautifully.
The further development of food, in grocery, restaurants, delivery and takeout. We need to plan it, provide for it and deliver it, far better than we have. It doesn’t mean more, just better.
Cyprus, by the harbour, probably Latchi or Paphos. Fresh fish, grills, wine and beach walks.
Ice cream - I am obsessed with it. Making it, eating it, making things out of it. I used to steal my mum’s glacé cherries to put on the top.
I fly kites. Not so weird, I guess, but I have a whole range of kites from the most modern to some really old ones. Very relaxing and enjoyable. I was also a choirboy for 11 years and still sing.
Winston Churchill - I have always been fascinated by his war leadership and subsequent fall from grace; Stephen Hawking, because he has an epic brain and view on the universe; and Karen Carpenter, because in my mind she had the best singing voice ever.
Kuriya Penthouse in Singapore. They noticed my guest and I were left-handed as we had a drink in the bar. They served the entire meal perfectly for left-handers. Even the sushi was laid to face a left-handed chopstick pair. Perfection.
8 October 2017
20 September 2017
12 September 2017
30 August 2017