Our People

Essential to the business’ success is the calibre, resourcefulness and commitment of our people. At management level Whatley Lane 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 transactions adhere to the strictest codes of practice regulated by the Property Ombudsman.

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


James Sawyer


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.



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.

Max Bell


Max spearheads running of the Newmarket office and has carved out a strong reputation for getting complex deals done. He specialises in new homes and developments in the local area and works in collaboration with national house builders to achieve the best desired outcome.


Notable achievements include the marketing and a sale of The Maltings in Newmarket and The Manor in Herringswell. He leads sales and lettings valuations in Suffolk and Cambridgeshire from country cottages to extraordinary homes. Max has strong ties to the equestrian and horseracing world which puts him well in tune with the local market. Max received the ‘Rising Star’ accolade in 2016 at the Cambridge Property Awards, as voted by his industry peer group.


Outside of work, Max enjoys rugby and cooking.


Chloe Bullett



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.

Archie Tilley


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.

Ellen Wilding


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.


Christopher Sawyer


From 1991 to 2006, Christopher led Deltron Electronics plc, initially leading the buyout, then developing it into a strong European group with ten European locations and representative offices in China and Japan. Deltron Electronics was quoted in 1996 and sold to ABACUS Electronics Plc in 2006. In 2007, Christopher became Chairman of the Lorien Limited group and led the portfolio reorganisation of that group, in particular developing its engineering and resourcing businesses substantially before the subsequent successful sales of both businesses. Between 2006 to 2013, he was Chairman of the parent of Bearmach Limited, a global distributor of Land Rover parts. Christopher has been a non-executive director of MCHL since 2008 and currently chairs the audit committee of MCHL.

He developed Deltron Electronics Plc into a European-leading manufacturer and distributor of niche components, which he sold during 2006. He is now Chairman of businesses engaged in recruitment, and estate agency. He is a Fellow of the RSA and the Institute of Directors, Companion of the Chartered Management Institute and is a Freeman of the City of London. Chairman of the Audit Committee appointed 2008.

Michael Whatley


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.