Our People

Essential to the business’ success is the calibre, resourcefulness and commitment of our people. At advisor level Whatley Lane estate agents benefit from access to an exciting network, holding leading positions within a number of organisations.

Personality and experience are given equal emphasis in the approach to staff recruitment. Our dedication to staff development means we consistently deliver the ultimate in customer service – both in terms of relationship building and achieving the desired outcomes for all interested parties.

We ensure all sales and lettings consultants are qualified and that transactions adhere to the strictest codes of practice, regulated by the Property Ombudsman, Association of Residential Lettings Agents (ARLA) and and Safe Agent.

Clients have one lead point-of-contact throughout the process to ensure their respective property has a focused approach from the moment of launch through to that all-important completion.

We pride ourselves on being extremely well-connected in the region and our local ‘know how’ means we are often invited to be the first to view a property and, as a result, our clients benefit from this first-mover advantage.

Our People

TEAM

James Sawyer

HEAD OF OFFICE &

SENIOR NEGOTIATOR

James established the Bury St. Edmunds office. Notable achievements include the sale and acquisition of The Northgate, developing a robust lettings portfolio of high-end buy-to-let properties, and concluding various country house sales in the West Suffolk Area.

 

Prior to joining Whatley Lane, James worked for several luxury brands in the UK and Europe. He also worked as a commercial property analyst for an Islamic investment bank in the City and was a sales and lettings manager at an independent agency in the fast-paced London Docklands residential and corporate relocation markets.

 

Following his BA History of Art at the University of East Anglia, focused in architecture and the evolution of the English Country House, James achieved a RICS accredited MSc in International Real Estate at the Royal Agricultural College Cirencester which included an exchange programme at the National University of Singapore, working in asset management at Colliers International.

 

Outside of work, James has a passion for country pursuits, wine harvesting, marathon running, art and architecture. Also a foodie and cooks a wicked steak; receiving the prize in Bury St. Edmunds 2017 episode of the acclaimed TV series Come Dine With Me.

Laura Swallow

LETTINGS MANAGER

BURY ST. EDMUNDS

Our lettings guru, Laura grew up in Suffolk and has worked in senior and lettings managerial positions for both large corporates and independent lettings agencies. As a former business owner and founder of a successful independent inventory provider, Laura knows all too well the necessity of robust property management when it comes to lettings procedures and complemented by her gaining the highly coveted ARLA qualification.

 

Outside of the office, Laura is happiest in wellies, dog-walking and wandering the Suffolk countryside exploring country pubs. Laura can be found regularly turning up the heat dancing the Salsa and Bachata.

 

Chloe Bullett

LETTINGS MANAGER

NEWMARKET

Having lived and been educated in Bury St. Edmunds, Cambridge and the surrounding area for most of her life, Chloe has developed an in-depth knowledge of the local property market. Chloe has always had a keen interest in property and understands the importance of matching the right tenant to the right property.

 

Chloe brings an abundance of energy to her current role administering the lettings portfolio and provides a refreshing client-facing perspective drawing on various customer service experience gained over the years – within the Greene King property team prior to joining Whatley Lane. Her talent has been recognised by the Newmarket office receiving the Gold Winner accolade from the British Property Awards 2018-19.

 

Away from the office, Chloe is a tour de force on the Netball court and regularly recognised as ‘match player’ while enjoying many country pursuits.

Ellen Wilding

SALES & LETTINGS

ADMINISTRATOR

Ellen recently joined Whatley Lane after working for a family business for over 20 years. Ellen brings with her a wealth of experience in Sales and Customer Service. Enthusiastic, personable and very proactive she will ensure the smooth running of the Newmarket office.

 

As a fluent Spanish speaker, Ellen loves to spend holidays touring Spain and enjoying the culture and cuisine. As a very keen cook herself, Ellen looks after the ‘Over 65’ Club in her local village; furnishing them with her culinary delights.

Archie Tilley

TRAINEE NEGOTIATOR

BURY ST. EDMUNDS

Our talented videographer, Archie is born and bred in Bury St. Edmunds. Enthusiastic with considerable attention to detail and very much a people person having had a background in hospitality, Archie is responsible for management of our lettings in the Bury St. Edmunds office. Our social media, graphic design and videos – leading on the future of property marketing – are carefully curated following his graduating in Creative Media Production.

 

Outside of the office, Archie can be found exploring far flung abandoned places to seek out conversion opportunities.

Harry Sawyer

TRAINEE

NEGOTIATOR

Harry is a disruptive force of boundless energy. He brings with him a naturally enquiring mind, unrivalled persistence and particularly enjoys house valuations that involve meeting other four legged friends.

ADVISORS

Christopher Sawyer

CHAIRMAN

Christopher has over 40 years’ of management experience in the food, automotive, aerospace and defence, electronic component, recruitment and property industries. He led the buyout and development of Deltron Electronics Plc into a European-leading manufacturer and distributor with representative offices in China and Japan, which became fully quoted on the London Stock Exchange in 1995.

 

During 2007 Christopher as Chairman spearheaded a public to private bid by acquiring Lorein Plc a £150m T/0 following restructuring focused on two businesses a specialist engineering consultancy managing £125 million of capital expenditure pa for leading international companies sold to a New York quoted business in 2013 and Lorien Resourcing a specialist IT recruitment and search business tripling turnover to £325m sold to Impellam Plc in 2014.

 

Christopher is a former Non-Exec Director of Marshall of Cambridge (Holdings) Ltd and a Non-Exec Director of Marshall Motor Holdings Plc an AIM quoted national motor retailer turnover £2 billion+

 

He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and the Institute of Directors, Companion of the Chartered Management Institute, former Master of the Worshipful Company of Scientific Instrument Makers, Trustee of think tank Tomorrow’s Company and a Freeman of the City of London.

 

Christopher and his wife Jane live in Suffolk have two dogs and a cat!  His interests include reading, shooting, classic cars, property investment, keeping fit, wining and dining.

Michael Whatley

OPERATIONS DIRECTOR

Michael has over 40 years’ experience as a solicitor having qualified and worked in the City in 1971. He opened his own practice in Suffolk in 1990. His legal expertise extends to contractual disputes, equine, reversionary interest, buying and selling of licensed premises and property conveyancing.

 

Michael is also a Duty Solicitor and an advocate in the Magistrate’s Courts and occasionally in the Crown and County Courts. Michael also leads the Criminal Defence Team dealing with the majority of matters dealt with in the Magistrates’ Court and high profile cases in the Crown Court.

 

His personal interests include most aspects of country life including riding, racehorse ownership, golf, tennis and squash. He lives in Suffolk and is married with three grown up children.