Dandara South East has appointed a new Head of Land, who has taken over responsibility for its sites in Kent, Sussex and Surrey. Rebecca Taylor is a highly experienced Land Manager who has worked for major developers including Barratt, Bellway and Crest Nicholson, and now aims to see Dandara becoming a rival to the largest companies operating in the region.
“What attracted me to the role was the ability to make the next step in my career and grow with the company,” she says. “I had watched Dandara grow over the past few years and become a well-known brand in the area, with some great sites out on the market. My immediate plan is to buy three to four larger sites each year and grow the business to be fully competitive with other major housebuilders in the area.”
She intends to make sure that Dandara becomes a household name in the region. “Part of my mission is to ensure that Dandara becomes a well-known brand in terms of land and types of sites we are buying so that we will be one of the first names that agents think of when they are looking for competitive bids.”
Rebecca started her career as a Junior Land Secretary with Crest Nicholson in 2003, at a time when it was still unusual to see women in the industry. “I didn’t really think about it,” she recalls, “I was excited by the industry and wanted to progress, as I thought I had a good future ahead of me. I left Crest Nicholson after 18 months and moved to Barratt Homes in Sundridge, working with one of the few female land directors in the industry at the time, who really inspired me.”
Determined to move up the career ladder, Rebecca trained in-house during her nine years with Barratt Homes, where she was promoted to Land Buyer and purchased Martello Lakes and Fantasea Water Park in Dartford. A promotion to Land Manager followed after a move to Bellway’s South London and Kent offices, working on sites including Bexley College and Springfield Mill in Maidstone, which was followed by three years at Redrow.
She has become an expert in the land market in the south east of England. “It’s a patch I know really well,” she says. “By joining Dandara as Head of Land I have achieved one of my major career goals” she says. “It’s really exciting to be part of a company which is growing so fast and has so much to offer.”
Dandara South East has had an excellent track record in acquiring land parcels in the region over the past year, despite the disruption of the pandemic. In January, it bought a 16-acre plot of land with permission to build 110 new homes on the edge of the Kent village of East Malling, while during 2020 the company acquired a second site in the village of Bearsted, just outside Maidstone. Dandara is already developing 100 new three, four and five-bedroom homes at The Sycamores on a 10-acre site in Bearsted, so the option to add a further 13-acre greenfield site in Bearsted to its portfolio was ideal.
“I will oversee planning applications on both current and future sites,” says Rebecca. “I am looking forward to making Dandara a household name in the region, and the first choice for home buyers looking for a high-quality, well-designed property, as well as for land owners looking to sell land for thoughtful, careful and site-appropriate development.”