Our Technical Team

Rosemary Coyne

Rosemary is a built environment professional specialising in the holistic development of low carbon sustainable communities, with over 20 years’ experience of working with public, private and NGOs in the UK and overseas. Rosemary facilitates cross-disciplinary working and identification of opportunities to change ‘business as usual’ to improve long-term outcomes from investment in the built environment. Rosemary’s roles include Coordinator for the SHAP and ERDF project manager on housing retrofit. As SHAP Coordinator, Rosemary commissions and manages research into emerging issues for the housing sector, which supports informed decision-making regarding policy development and project delivery. Current research includes performance standards for healthy housing, new proposals to address fuel poverty, procurement to secure desired outcomes, evaluating on value-for-money not lowest cost, and business models to unlock national programmes of investment in UK housing to meet 2050 standards. Rosemary is a West Midlands Green Leader; Keele University Honorary Research Fellow and former Design Council Built Environment Expert (BEE) and Design Midlands panel member.

Richard Bubb

Richard runs Symeco Ltd – a Shropshire-based business offering energy advice, energy assessments and the installation of renewable technologies. Richard has been involved in the environmental sector for over 25 years, and during that time has worked within the voluntary sector, public sector and for his own business.
Although the majority of Symeco’s work is carried out in the West Midlands, Richard is a trained coach for Climate-KIC – a large public-private partnership tackling climate change across Europe. This work considers radical, transitional approaches to developing low carbon lifestyles and includes partners in Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Hungary and Poland. Symeco works with small businesses, voluntary sector organisations and householders who want to make a significant difference to their energy consumption. This includes an assessment of actual energy use, need for changes in behaviour and opportunities for converting to renewable energy consumption. It takes a comprehensive yet realistic consideration of energy consumption patterns and identifies effective methods to reduce energy use, energy costs and carbon emissions. This is not solely focused at ‘deep green’ people and organisations but often people that do not understand their energy impacts or understand the practical improvements they can take. An understanding of the customer’s circumstances and requirements is key to ensuring that solutions can be found that meet the customer’s needs

Phil Beardmore

Phil Beardmore is an Environment and Sustainability Consultant, specialising in energy efficiency, renewable energy, and water saving. His clients include public authorities, SMEs, charities, cooperatives, and housing providers. His current interests include the use of smart meter data to identify additional energy savings, and improving the energy efficiency of buildings being transferred from local authorities to the voluntary sector under asset transfer programmes. He was voted one of the Top 50 Green Leaders in the West Midlands. He is a founder director of Community Energy Birmingham. He has recently been appointed as a Trustee of the Wildlife Trust for Birmingham and the Black Country. Phil is also a leading figure in the cooperative movement locally and works with cooperatives on business planning, membership strategy and event management. Phil buys from cooperatives wherever possible. He is Secretary of Cooperatives West Midlands, an elected member of the Membership and Community Council of Central England Cooperative, a Director of Citysave Credit Union.

Duncan Sluce

Duncan is an experienced energy analyst and modeller, specialising in energy scenarios, forecasts and cost benefit analysis. He has considerable experience with both gas and electricity, supply and demand. His speciality is understanding how these interact, from his work leading the whole energy systems modelling in the National Grid’s Future Energy Scenarios team for some years. In this team he also spent many years forecasting and developing scenarios of gas and heat demand. Here he focused on detailed domestic energy use, most notably for heating, and domestic energy efficiency.


Charlie Baker

Charlie has designed many things from furniture to housing co-operatives to large urban masterplans, always with a focus on sustainability. He is an expert in low carbon refurbishment and energy supply and has authored several reports on retrofit standards and finance. He is a director of Red Co-operative, design and build retrofit specialists, winner of the 2017 NWRCA Innovation Award. He established the Retrofit Pattern Book to share best practice ideas in retrofit and is currently delivering zero carbon homes with Retrofit Works in an ERDF-funded project called Homes as Energy Systems.


Paul Forrest

Paul Forrest is the Head of Research at the West Midlands Economic Forum (WMEF), a neutral, independent forum designed to bring together the private, public, and voluntary sectors to discuss and evaluate local economic performance. The WMEF seeks to foster greater understanding of sustainable trends within the regional economy, placing them in a global context.

Sarah Hughes

Sarah is an experienced business manager focussing on SMEs, sustainability (financial and environmental) and co-operative business models. Sarah’s research and project work includes:  Summarising Finance Models for Retrofit of All Housing Tenures, Developing retrofit cost models and detailed finance proposals and householder agreements and Establishing a Local Authority Green Deal Plus Social Enterprise

Rob Annable

Rob is an Architect and tutor at Birmingham School of Architecture. He is also Director of Axis Design Architects, experienced in housing design and associated topics such as sustainability, digital tools, BIM and self-build projects. Rob has worked on numerous award-winning urban regeneration and housing projects across the Midlands.

Pat Laughlin

Pat specialises in supporting sustainable business growth and in supply chain development. She also has an extensive background in micro, SME and global low carbon business development

Mike Leonard

Mike is a CEO and Visiting Professor of Manufacturing and the Built Environment, Birmingham City University. He established the Futures Group New Homes “Think Tank” which advises Government on better building regulation.  Key issues include improving quality in building, preventing overheating, enhancing indoor air quality, embracing the skills challenge, promoting UK building materials and promoting the key role  of SMEs.