Meet The Board


Nigel Welby, Executive Chairman

After an early career with Unilever, Nigel Welby left to set up a business on his own in 1982, specialising in commercial real estate investment and project finance. He has now added a wide range of business interests and organised, with David Phillips, the acquisition of Retirement Village PLC in 2005 from its founding owners.

David Phillips, Group Commercial Director

David has been involved in commercial real estate finance, investment and development in the UK with Richard Ellis Financial Services (now CBRE), HVB and in Australia with JLW (now JLL). Working with Nigel Welby since 1996, he was appointed to RVG on the acquisition of the company in 2005. David is a Chartered Surveyor (MRICS).

Neil Donaldson, Group Finance Director

After earlier senior finance roles in the IT industry, Neil moved across to the care sector seven years ago. Initially with a provider of residential services to adults with learning difficulties, and then more recently with a nationally based elderly care home provider. He brings a wide range of board level experience having managed the finances of these organisations during a difficult and financially challenging period within the wider care industry. Neil is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA).

John MacLeod, Group Company Secretary & Corporate Development Manager

John joined Retirement Villages in 2015 as Corporate Development Manager. He was previously a Senior Project Finance Analyst at Google in Ireland. He began his career with PwC in London before joining the UK Investment Banking team at Lehman Brothers and Nomura International. John is a Chartered Accountant (ICAEW) and has an MBA from IMD in Switzerland.

David Thomas, Group Care Director

David brings extensive nursing, quality and governance experience to the group. He has worked at a senior level across the NHS and independent sectors. He has a remit to review and enhance RVG’s existing structures and processes, one element of which is to oversee the recruitment of high calibre managers to further strengthen the group’s care management team as the business grows. David is a Registered General Nurse and a Chartered Member of the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health.

William Crawford, Group Development Director at Retirement Villages Group

Will Crawford, Group Development Director

Will joined Retirement Villages in 2015 and is the Development Director with overall responsibility for growing the portfolio through acquisitions and development. Will has acquired and developed out numerous development opportunities in the leisure, commercial and residential sectors having previously worked for such companies as Whitbread, Arlington and Kilmartin. Will is a Chartered Surveyor (MRICS).

Sarah Burgess, Group Sales & Marketing Director

Sarah has considerable experience in the residential property industry, in both estate agency, as well land and new homes, specifically focusing upon retirement housing sales. She is responsible for overseeing the group’s marketing with direct responsibility for all property sales. This encompasses the dedicated in-house agency service, acting for residents and their families at the time their property is sold.

Oscar Russell, Group Estates Director

Oscar joined Retirement Villages in 2014, and has overall responsibility for ensuring the smooth operation and management of the villages and their estates. Oscar previously worked in the Leasehold Block Management sector, managing large portfolios in and around London for some of the leading house builders and developers. Oscar is a Member of the Institute of Residential Property Management (MIRPM) and an Associate of RICS.

Christina Edwards CBE – Non-Executive Director

Christina Edwards CBE, Non-Executive Director

Christina has a lifetime of experience at senior management and director level in the National Health Service, the Department of Health and in the charitable sector. She will support and challenge care management and practice to further enhance the experience and safety for residents as well as encouraging good governance across all group functions. She chairs the Group Quality, Compliance and Risk Committee. Christina is a Registered General Nurse and Health Visitor with a Masters Degree in Business Management.