We are thrilled to introduce a dedicated leadership team for our High Quality Residential (HQR) division – Lyndon Marfell (Divisional Director) and Stuart Cecil-Dennett (Divisional Commercial Manager). Together, Lyndon and Stuart will strive to achieve continued growth within the sector and provide a spearheaded focus to the division.
Our HQR market continues to be within London and the Home Counties; from contemporary new builds and complex structural alterations, to the refurbishment of traditional listed private residences. Lyndon and Stuart will actively engage with our existing network, drive our in-house project teams to ensure quality of delivery whilst creating new contacts and opportunities for the business.
We’ve been speaking to them to learn more about their backgrounds and plans for the division.
Tell us about your careers so far
Lyndon: I began my career working across the South Island of New Zealand with the Lund Construction Group in 2010 as an Architectural Draftsman and Assistant Quantity Surveyor. I moved to London in 2014 and in that time, I’ve worked as a Contracts Manager, Surveyor and Project Manager for London based main contractors. In September 2021 I joined Walter Lilly as a Project Director, and I’m delighted that I am now leading the HQR Division as Divisional Director.
Stuart: Walter Lilly has been my working home for the last 15 years. I joined the company in 2007 as an Apprentice Trainee, whilst studying for my degree at the University of Greenwich. It’s been a great place to work. I’m pleased to be appointed as Divisional Commercial Manager for HQR, working alongside Lyndon.
What are your responsibilities as the HQR Divisional Team?
Lyndon: I’ll lead the HQR division forward and will be autonomously responsible for all areas and activities of operation across the division, ensuring we focus on our sector and streamline our processes. I will bring a holistic leadership approach from getting new HQR opportunities into the business, to supporting our project teams throughout the project lifecycles.
Stuart: I’ll be overseeing the commercial teams across the HQR sector, as well as supporting the project teams with leadership and energy. I enjoy knitting people and tasks together, so that whole teams can flourish, and I want to ensure the business succeeds in line with Walter Lilly’s core values.
What makes you great for this new role?
Lyndon: I’m excited to lead this group of highly skilled and experienced professionals forward. I’ve worked in the London HQR sector for nearly a decade following a wide range of projects completed in New Zealand and have developed my uniquely blended skillset along the way.
Stuart: During my 15 years with Walter Lilly, I’ve worked exclusively on HQR. It has been an ever-changing market with people leaving and joining the industry, a shift in wealth and ownership of HQR properties, and a technology boom in construction. It’s been exciting to witness and be part of these changes, and it’s given me an excellent understanding to help shape the future of HQR here and embrace the challenges and opportunities ahead.
What are your goals for growing HQR?
Lyndon: Stuart and I want to re-establish Walter Lilly as London’s premier specialist HQR contractor. We want to grow and improve the division giving it a clear focus to deliver the highest quality projects for our industry peers and clients.
Stuart: We want to build on the excellent reputation Walter Lilly already has. Plus, we aim to lead a division that people – employees, subcontractors, clients, and consultants – want to work with.
What is your favourite / most memorable project at Walter Lilly to date?
Lyndon: There’ve been too many memorable projects throughout my career and at Walter Lilly, it’s hard to choose! The most satisfying projects are those where everyone involved – us, the client, consultant team and subcontractors – are proactive and collaborate to deliver an exceptional project. It makes for a positive and productive team environment. I love the complexities of the inner London congested sites and the differing intricacies of the ranging country estates.
Stuart: The projects we work on at Walter Lilly continually amaze me – not only because of the splendour and quality of materials we use but also the feats of engineering. My most memorable project is Hanover Lodge, at Regent’s Park. It was the first project I worked on as a wide-eyed 18-year-old, and I remember being awestruck by a swimming pool with a moveable floor that could convert into a ballroom. Almost two decades on, I’ve seen quite a lot of these, but back then, I thought it was a fantastic piece of engineering. It cemented this as an industry I wanted to stay within.
As for my favourite project, I’d say a project in Grosvenor Square because I was involved from the beginning – tendering to completion. It’s always satisfying to see a successful project from start to finish, and the house was beautiful.
What HQR projects are you looking forward to the most in the coming year?
Lyndon: I’m looking forward to the continued re-development of a structurally challenging terrace house in Chelsea, we were brought on-board to provide a gold standard level of service due to project complexities and are delivering. We are also nearing completion on a couple of truly stunning large country estate house following the fantastic efforts of the full project team.
Stuart: I’m looking forward to completing projects such as our job near Basingstoke – a country house due to finish within the year. I’m also looking forward to all the varied projects we don’t yet know about.
Tell us something interesting that people might find surprising about you?
Lyndon: I love sports, health, and fitness. I regularly compete and train with an athletics and triathlon club. A long time ago I was privilege enough to wear the silver fern and represent New Zealand at 3000m Steeple Chase.
Stuart: My sporting story has less glory than Lyndon’s! I grew up in Horsham and used to be a lifeguard. Saving lives is a worthy role, unfortunately I couldn’t swim. I do not know how I got the job. I also never had to rescue anyone, so I suspect the people of Horsham had a lucky escape! It wasn’t the career for me.