Housebuilder set up by former Avant chief exec Mark Mitchell has brought in four former staff from the developer

Housebuilder Honey, a new venture set up by former Avant Homes chief executive Mark Mitchell, has revealed its new management team will include four staff taken from Avant. 

New home - Honey's management team is (from left) Richard Hall, Graham Dawson, Jeremy Gledhill, Howard Mee, Mark Mitchell, Martin White and Sarah Clingo

Honey’s new management team (from left): Richard Hall, Graham Dawson, Jeremy Gledhill, Howard Mee, Mark Mitchell, Martin White and Sarah Clingo

Avant Homes was taken over by Yorkshire-based SME Berkeley DeVeer in 2021, in a deal spearheaded by former Persimmon boss Jeff Fairburn and backed by Elliott Advisers

The appointments from regional housebuilder Avant see Jeremy Gledhill become chief finance officer, Richard Hall named head of procurement, Martin White appointed head of technical and Graham Dawson become engineering manager.

In addition, Sarah Clingo joins from the Vistry Group to be Honey’s commercial manager, and Howard Mee has been appointed as land and planning consultant.

Mitchell left Avant less than a year after being made chief executive at the firm, and then announced he was setting up Honey in Autumn last year.  

Honey is backed by private equity firm Alchemy Partners and its Alchemy Special Opportunities Fund IV.  

Mitchell’s departure followed that of former boss of Avant, Colin Lewis, as deputy chair of the board. Lewis told Housing Today he left the regional housebuilder, which had a turnover of £450m when it was taken over in 2021, because he was concerned about the quality of homes that would be produced under the new leadership - assertions that Avant rejected.

Honey chief executive, Mark Mitchell, said: “We have assembled a highly experienced team with the capability and ambition to ensure Honey quickly becomes a recognised and respected housebuilding brand in Yorkshire and the Midlands.

“Our investment in new high specification headquarters provides everyone at Honey, and those who will join us in future, with an excellent flexible environment in which to both work and relax.”

Earlier this year Honey announced it had put in its first plans for a £14m, 50-home development in South Normanton, Derbyshire, and Mitchell said it would soon be submitting plans for a second development. 

He added: “This will be a be a big year for the Honey team and we are focused on accelerating our growth trajectory throughout 2023.”

The firm has also revealed it has signed a five-year lease on a new 5,000 sq ft Grade A office to be its headquarters in Sheffield City Centre in Ecclesall Road. It was advised by property consultancy Knight and Frank on the lease. The housebuilder said the offices can accommodate up to 50 people to enable the delivery of its growth plans.