A MAJOR Somerset company has announced a new chair.

Duncan Brown has been announced as the new chair at property partnership Greenslade Taylor Hunt.

Mr Brown, who runs the firm’s commercial, survey and valuation and property management divisions, joined GTH in April 2003 having previously been a Director of a well-known Westminster based firm in Central London and has 32 years' experience dealing with commercial property.

He takes over from Graham Ford, who runs the firm’s Development Land and Planning Department, and has led the partnership for the past two years.

“These are difficult times, but I remain particularly optimistic about the future," said Mr Brown.

"Brexit is done, vaccinations are underway, interest rates remain at an all-time low and the British economy will bounce back with confidence during the course of this year.”

He specialises in the acquisition and disposal of all types of commercial property including shops, offices, industrial premises, development sites and investments.

Mr Brown also has considerable experience in landlord and tenant negotiations, including rent reviews and lease renewals, and has acted as an expert witness in numerous arbitration, independent expert, mediation, tribunal and court referrals.

Duncan is a committee member of Taunton's Lord's Taverners charity and supports other charities, including Arts Taunton.

And Mr Ford said he expects the coming year to offer opportunities for the longstanding business, which has offices in Somerset, Devon and Dorset.

“As we reflect on 2020, I think we can agree that it hasn’t been exactly what we had all expected," he said.

“The year began with much optimism with all departments, particularly residential being extremely busy, the pandemic took hold and I can recall very clearly on March 23 (my birthday) sending all of our staff home.

"At that time and in the coming weeks, we were all sharing feelings of anxiety and struggling to come to terms with what lay ahead for both our business and personal lives.

“Having worked through three financial recessions and foot and mouth, I was optimistic that GTH would survive and indeed that is exactly what we have done.”

Despite a third national lockdown the firm is poised to continue its wide-ranging work across a number of disciplines from agriculture and antiques through to surveys, valuations, lettings and sales of all types of residential and commercial properties.

For information on services offered by the firm and the measures it is taking to be Covid compliant, visit www.gth.net.