Dr Jess Steele OBE

Chief Executive Officer

Jess has 30 years’ experience as a local community activist and entrepreneur in Deptford and Hastings, as well as at national level working with government, funders, corporates and academics. An active social entrepreneur, she has established community enterprises in publishing, heritage, tourism, childcare, financial management, neighbourhood development, workspace and, more recently, homes that are genuinely affordable in perpetuity and leisure for everyone.

Jess’ company Jericho Road is a founder investor, alongside Meanwhile Space in WRNV Ltd.

Eddie Bridgeman

Director (Meanwhile Space)

In 2009 Eddie co-founded Meanwhile Space CIC with the ambition of creating a social enterprise that makes the most of otherwise underused space. The organisation now delivers projects with private and public landlords and actively seeks spaces for meanwhile use.

Eddie’s experience is predominantly of places that have socio-economic and perception challenges, typically urban communities and seaside towns. He is interested in how the property industry can make create an innovative response to realise change.

Eddie’s company Meanwhile Space is a founder investor, alongside Jericho Road in WRNV Ltd.

John Brunton

General Manager & Director

John is our General Manager and Director. He is responsible for the day to day running of WRNV and manages the redevelopment of our buildings as well as the management of the ones which are now complete and occupied.

John has 16 years of business management experience and also manages our housing subsidiary, Living Rents. He is passionate about the possibilities of affordable housing that the Observer Building can offer local people in need after seeing the benefits that our existing housing stock offers its residential tenants.

Emily Berwyn

OB Project Champion

Emily is currently providing a strategic decision-making role on the project board of the ambitious Observer Building project in Hastings.

Emily is the co-founder and Director of the pioneering social enterprise and advisory organisation Meanwhile Space.

She is an experienced project designer and manager for programmes that utilise vacant space to support community initiatives, social and creative entrepreneurialism, and facilitate periods of positive change. She was featured in the RBS Women in Social Enterprise 100, as a BPF Future Leaders winner for Innovation.

Sean Lavers


Seán is responsible for the maintenance and cleaning of all our buildings along with providing customer service to our residents and tenants.

His caretaking & maintenance experience was gained whilst working for the University of Brighton for 14 years.

Kieron Copeland


Kieron originally joined us through the Kickstart Scheme to start a new career as a Caretaker and is now a full-time member of the team. He works closely with Sean, our Caretaker to learn Caretaking skills across our buildings.

Kieron loves helping people and in his spare time, likes to go fishing.

Amanda Davies

Finance Coordinator

Amanda has taken on many of the bookkeeping/financial tasks within the company and aims to provide support with the various funding processes.

She has over 25 years of experience gained within commercial business and is now very pleased to be working for a company that has the needs of the community at its heart.

Equality is very important to her and she enjoys being a member of the local village community where she lives.

Kit Godfrey

Deputy General Manager

Kit works with our General Manager to support building redevelopment projects alongside our professional teams to deliver often complex projects in difficult and derelict buildings.

Kit originally hailed from an arts background and became interested in operations within the cultural sector. He later retrained as a carpenter and worked within the construction industry before moving into building management and development.

Kit is excited by pulling together his broad experience and applying it to an exciting organisation within the great town of Hastings.

Sullivan Palmer

Development Assistant

Sullivan has joined through the kickstart scheme and is training to become a development assistant working with the office team on a number of activities from getting the post to helping out with tours.

Sullivan is excited to be working and helping out in a new area, with new people and to be learning new things as well as getting to see all of the projects that the team is currently working on especially the Observer building.

In his spare time, Sullivan likes to Swim, cycle, and play computer games.

Mark Boorman


Hayley Knight

Development Assistant

Info coming soon…

Sarah Tingley

Hospitality & Events Manager

Info coming soon…

Lottie Knights

Tenants & Spaces Coordinator

Info coming soon…