Meet the Team - Alchemy Utilities

Meet the Team

Richard Griffin


Richard leads the management team of Alchemy Utilities.

Richard is a specialist in power generation and the integration and operation of local energy systems. He has amassed over 30 years’ experience in the European and International Energy Utilities sector, and held a number of board level roles in the European energy industry.

Following a very successful track record in innovation, Ofgem accreditation, DECC recognition and successful operation of the first Pure Plant Oil Renewably fuelled CHP system and the first small scale gasification based CHP systems in the UK; Richard and his team have been responsible for bringing together the exclusive technology relationships from their UK and European supply base which now forms Alchemy Utilities Ltd.

Richard’s own technical and commercial experience includes: gas turbine, gas engine, renewably fuelled reciprocating engine based CHP systems, advanced gasification based CHP systems, fossil based steam turbine power generation; OEM specifying, turnkey project development, and the integration, business operation and management of both large grid connected facilities and local distributed energy systems.

Previous positions include: CEO Volter (UK) Ltd, MD LowC Communities; Associate Partner Ecofys UK; Director of European Business Development for Solomon Associates (US based – Dallas) providing strategic, operational, and management consultancy at board level to UK and European international utilities; COO for the Nedalo Group (a distributed CHP provider-Texas Utilities); Director Texas Utilities Europe;  Director, Pharos Energy UK & Ireland Holding B.V (the first UK  based company of E.on); Acquisition Manager and member of the Dutch Board of Generation for the ABB Group (based in NL); International Consortium Leader, India (based at the ABB steam turbine technical lead centre in Germany >100MWe).

Qualifications: Dipl MSc from Nottingham University, gained distinctions in Business administration, from the GEC management school Dunchurch, and Techniques du Commerce International from the GEC Alsthom Business School -Versailles.

Andrew West

Group Operations Director

Andrew leads the operations and technical department of Alchemy Utilities.

Andrew has over 30 years’ experience in the construction industry, the last 15 years at director level in both PLC and private organisations. He has experience in all disciplines within the industry and as such has an excellent overview of the build environment. Previously Andrew has been concentrating on low energy construction processes through the Code for Sustainable Homes using off site manufacturing methods of construction. He was on the panel of the NHBC Standards for timber frame housing April 08. Through his interest in timber frame construction Andrew has been responsible for setting up two timber frame manufacturing businesses. Recently Andrew has been totally immersed in taking full advantage of maximising the benefits of both decentralized generation and a renewable heat source within the confines of the building environment, thereby using localised utilities to service buildings as intended.

Previous positions include: Construction Director Magnus Homes, Construction Director Allison Homes, Construction Director Allison Homes Eastern, Commercial & Technical Director Allison Homes Eastern, Production & Technical Director Larkfleet Homes, M.D.Low C Construction, Operations Director Volter UK Ltd

Qualifications: Ordinary National Diploma in Construction Technology Basford Hall F.E. Higher National Diploma in Construction Technology from Trent University Nottingham (Distinction).

Robert Barr

Group CFO and Commercial Director

Robert leads the strategic and commercial structure within Alchemy Utilities as well as the legal & taxation policy

Robert Barr, qualified as an ACCA in Leeds aged 21, then spent 12 years working in financial services eventually building a multi-disciplinary finance company supporting Manufacturer franchises for Mercedes Benz, Volkswagen Audi, BMW, Ford, Opel and Vauxhall.

Following this Robert spent 15 years in the Travel and Leisure industry with detailed experience at Board level including multiple hotel acquisitions and responsibility for over 1250 employees as well as sitting on the board of a fully listed Public Company quoted on the LSE. In 1997 he led a £62 million buyout taking the Leisure business Wallace Arnold Holidays Limited out of the listed PLC Group with 3i Group as the key investor.

Seven years later, Robert moved into Renewable technologies and Carbon reduction services. Based on a strong working relationship with one of the world’s leading Healthcare businesses, Robert conducted a worldwide study covering their 4 billion euro Global property estate and helped them to make a significant reduction in their 188,000 tonne Carbon footprint thereby achieving Worldwide Carbon Trust Standard certification. Working closely with a highly progressive international group driven by carbon reduction goals provided a hugely beneficial insight into the complexities and the potential of International markets which underpins some of the strategic initiatives being sought by Alchemy Utilities.

In August 2015, after working alongside Arbor Heat and Power for a number of months, Robert joined their board to enhance their position in the market, and to fully realise his ambitions in renewable energy services with some of the best products in the industry.

Previous Positions: Managing Director Trust Leasing, Chairman Wallace Arnold Holidays Limited, Chairman Wallace Hotels Limited, Chairman Wallace Arnold Coaches Limited, Main Board Director BWAT Plc, Director Trust Motors Group, Chairman Divine Internet Group, CEO Complete Carbon Control Limited, Chairman Robert Sibbald Travel Group, CFO & Commercial Director Volter (UK) Limited

Qualifications: ACCA


Ewa Marek

Group Finance Director

Ewa leads the accounting department of Alchemy Utilities.

Ewa has over 20 year’s experience at board level in the energy telecommunications and construction sector. Ewa is a specialist in the development and implementation of new business and financial strategies specifically designed for the energy sector; and provides unchallenged leadership to the board for financial, treasury and accounting strategy. Ewa leads a small but highly focused team ensuring optimization of Alchemy’s group financial and strategic position in world markets.

Previous Positions: Financial Director Volter (UK) Ltd, Management Accountant at Lark Energy, Larkfleet Homes, Head of Finance in Low C Limited. Head of Finance in INEKS Ltd.

Qualifications: Masters in Administration Law from The University of Silesia in Katowice, completed post-graduate studies in Accountancy and The Modular Course in Business Entities Accounting fully accredited by The Association of Accountants in Poland. Graduated from Secondary School of Economics.

Ewa was recently recognized by Bulley Davey Accountants as Employee of the Year for her dedication to team management with Volter (UK) Ltd.


Nick McDowall

Technical Development Manager

In 2009 Nick graduated from The University of Nottingham with a Bachelors in Environmental Engineering (BEng (Hons)) and a Masters in Energy Conversion and Management (MSc), funded by an Industrial Sponsorship from industrial real estate provider Prologis. The course, which was fully accredited by CIBSE and the Engineering Council UK, provided a strong emphasis on management, science, technology and engineering within the context of renewable and sustainable energy technologies in the built environment.

Nick has a wide range of experience of number of energy systems and sustainability within the built environment. Nick has carried out feasibility studies for a number of different sizes and types of schemes, including large new build PFI schools in the BSF programme, University Campus developments and stately homes. The scope of the feasibility studies and the targets set within them have also varied; from gaining BREEAM compliance, to satisfying national carbon reduction targets for BSF schemes, to achieving a set cost reduction compared to traditional energy sources.

As part of a Project Team responsible for the renewable energy centre for Co-operative flagship Headquarters in Manchester, Nick dealt with day to day design and co-ordination issues along with client liaison on air quality issues as part of the renewable CHP integration.

As Business Development Manager for Arbor Heat and Power he is responsible for project development and client liaison from conception through to sale. Following the appointment of regional sub-distributors by Arbor Heat and Power, Nick is also responsible for coordinating and managing their activities nationwide.

Nick now has over seven years’ experience within the renewable CHP sector and as Technical Development Manager fronts the sales and technology department for Alchemy Utilities.

Dan Griffin

New Business Executive

Dan started his working career in 2009 as a project assistant for a market leader in renewable power. While working for the company he gained qualifications in Energy Efficiency, Business management, construction professional and a Higher National certificate in Engineering.

As well as gaining qualifications, Dan has worked in all elements in the delivery of a range of turnkey renewable solutions; gaining an in depth wide range of experience in sales and design, installation, commissioning and maintenance of bioliquid and wood based CHP systems.

Dan has been involved in a wide range of projects including the renewable energy centre in the Co-operatives headquarters in Manchester, a number of turnkey new build PFI schools in the BSF programmes and integrating innovative renewable power in rural estates.

Dan has also had a key role in project managing installations where he took a “hands on” role in installing and commissioning the ArborElectrogen range. After commissioning he covered items of scheduled maintenance on the unit, gaining valuable knowledge. As Senior Sales Co-ordinator for Arbor Heat and Power, Dan is responsible for client liaison from the initial point of contact through to sale and implementation.

Dan now works as New Business Executive for Alchemy Utilities and will be responsible for developing new business for the suite of products available.  

Tom Wire

Aftersales Manager

Tom finished Stamford Endowed school in 2012. He then spent the next 18 months travelling around New Zealand. In New Zealand, He worked in the forestry industry operating a TimberPro TF 830 in a small team of six that was responsible for processing 500 tonnes of soft wood a day.

On returning to the UK Tom used his previous networking opportunities to set up and run his own gardening, fencing and firewood business. He managed a small team of part time workers within the county of Lincolnshire

In April 2017 Tom was promoted to Aftersales Manager. His role includes managing a small team of engineers to ensure all systems are maintained to a high quality, building maintenance contracts for clients, sorting invoices and billings and managing the sale of spare parts. Tom works closely with the Aftersales office team, Engineers, Accounts Department and Operation Director; Andrew West


Alison Smith

Marketing & Communications Manager

Alison leads the Marketing and Advertising for Alchemy Utilities Ltd. Alison is responsible for all internal and external communication, project timelines and work back schedules, marketing strategy, social media channels, financial investments and budgeting.

Alison has experience working in Marketing, Advertising and Events for well-known Marketing agencies in Toronto, Canada. She’s worked with a variety of clients from Jägermeister Canada, Heineken Canada, Tito’s Vodka, Volkswagen, Leon’s Furniture, Nespresso, SodaStream and Google. As part of the Accounts team her scope of responsibilities included client liaison, identifying strategic marketing campaigns, financial investments, work back schedules for media, creative, production, social and advertising.

Alison has a Bachelor of Commerce Degree (B.Comm) from The University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada. Her 4 years she spent earning her degree allowed her to specialise in Marketing Management and graduated with honours.


K9 Coordinator

Saffy joined the Arbor team in February 2014. At just 3 months old her experience was minimal but she adapted well to her new role and quickly became an invaluable member of the office. With a natural ability to raise morale and keep the office free from cats she compliments the team well.

Despite no previous qualifications in renewables it didn’t take long for her to hone her skills in energy conservation through a strict daily sleeping routine, broken only by a lunchtime walk around the surrounding fields.

Her responsibilities include sales meeting support to Technical Development Manager Nick McDowall, treat sampler for all office snacks and importantly an early welcoming signal to approaching visitors (particularly delivery men and women).

Recent News

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