Our team

I have access to highly-qualified and experienced staff. We prioritise the quality of the services we provide to ensure maximum benefits for our clients.


Curriculum Vitae   



Amesbury House, 7 Pear Tree Way, Penrith, Cumbria CA11 8WA

Tel: 01768 890536   Mobile: 07971 446286  

Email: johna.slee@btinternet.com



With a background in Civil Engineering John has progressed through a number of senior positions in local government and the private sector. With a reputation for getting things done, he qualified as a Chartered Engineer when only 24 years of age and soon became responsible for the client side procurement and project management of large infrastructure schemes. With the downturn of Capital projects in the mid 1990’s, he moved into highway maintenance and property management and was part of the senior team that established a very successful ‘in house’ consultancy covering a broad range of white collar services. This Consultancy was then acquired by Capita where he moved through operational management to become Partnership Director responsible for development and growth of shared services delivered through two major Local Governement partnerships. Within this role he had wide exposure to elected members and particular success in public consultation. With ambition and drive, a passion for hard work, good organisation, and attention to detail, he became a Chartered Manager in 2009. More recently he has diversified into the rail sector driving technical excellence, growth and customer focus within a successful contracting organisation and latterly taking a more hands on roll Project Managing a number of bridge reconstructions and a house renovation from concept to completion.





Outsourcing of construction and business services

Corporate Governance and Strategy

Service transformation - Integrated delivery models

Key account and relationship leadership

Individual Project and Event management

Multi agency working  - Local Strategic Partnerships

Highways, rail and property service delivery

Programme Leadership (£200m/annum)

Public consultation and statutory procedures

Operational Management (£60m/annum)

New business start up mentoring

Business development and growth


  • BSc (2.1 with honours) in Civil Engineering Salford University (1978)       MBA Durham University (1998)
  • Chartered Engineer (CEng)         Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers (MICE)
  • Member of the Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation (MCIHT)
  • Chartered Manager (CMgr)         Member of the Chartered Management Institute (MCMI)




  • Strategic review and establishment of engineering and HSQE requirements to support future growth including helping win a number of 5 year CP5 frameworks to the value of £130m
  • Acknowledged very successful delivery of £6m D&B Reconstruction of Scarborough Railway Bridge York


  • Through development of shared services, maintained business centre turnover in 2011 despite 22% drop (£4m) in revenue from BwDBC thus increasing volume of external business from 18% to 38% (£9m).
  • Delivery of numerous physical and social regeneration schemes plus estates rationalisation and management
  • Rebuilt working relationship and operational performance of Strategic Partnership with Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council (BwDBC) following near termination in 2007. Under Johns leadership and influence Elected Member satisfaction rose from 34% to 78% in the two years to March 2011.
  • Set up new integrated highways service delivering 27% improvement in council blue collar productivity
  • Successfully mobilised and decommissioned 10 year Cumbria Strategic Partnership (£20m/annum)
  • Grew Cumbria account to £35m/annum - created 450 jobs over 8 years, doubled profitability of Local Practice Division and won three year extension.


  • Part of senior team who set up successful ‘in-house’ consultancy and oversaw subsequent externalisation
  • Responsible for successful delivery of £12M/annum Highways term maintenance contract 1995-9
  • Successful devolution of budgets to Eden Area Committee and agreement of Community Contracts.





Interim management, strategic reviews and business improvement – various commissions including:

  • Review of Engineering and HSQE for Story Contracting Ltd and establishment of new support structure to accommodate growth.
  • Individual PC scheme Project Management from concept /options appraisal through to delivery the most notable being the £6m Design & Build Reconstruction of Scarborough Bridge over River Ouse in York delivered at 10% net profit, on time and budget during 9 day blockade in February 2015. This included extensive public consultation and administration of statutory procedures due to difficult access arrangements and environmental/planning issues..
  • Supervising Civil Engineer for Story Contracting Institution of Civil Engineers Training Scheme which I established in 2012.
  • Project Management of flood recovery schemes, a house renovation and provision of accountancy services for a sole trader.


STORY CONTRACTING LTD (Jan 2014 – June 2014)

Interim Head of Technical accountable for the development and leadership of an effective design, engineering, technical training and HSQE service for the Rail division during a period of intense growth in securing CP5 framework contracts.


CAPITA GROUP plc and CAPITA SYMONDS (Feb 2001 – Feb 2012)

2008 – Partnerships Director responsible for Strategic Partnerships with Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council and  Cumbria County Council (ended 31/01/11) and Board Member of Capita Local Government Strategic Partnerships division.  Shared services delivered were: Technical Services, Human Resources, Revenues, Benefits, Finance and Pensions Administration, Print and Schools IT. Combined annual turnover peaked at £60m with 1000 staff.

  • Relationship management through joint business planning and review, which delivered year on year improvement in Elected Member Satisfaction – member of BwDBC/PCT Chief Officers Team allowing understanding and contribution to wider Council and Health strategy, policy and service delivery
  • Through successful matrix management and good relationships with Trade Unions,  drove cultural change to ensured strong operational performance against  key performance measures with no penalties incurred
  • Delivery of new business and additional jobs and significant annual ‘efficiency’ savings - £700k in 2010/11 for BwDBC - well in excess of £160k target with many contributing to sustainability agenda
  • Development of innovative integrated service delivery models helping drive efficiency, transformation and productivity improvements in Highways, Revenues & Benefits and Customer Services and Human Resources
  • Masterplanning and seeking development partners to deliver regeneration aspects of BwDBC LSP Vision 2030 including managing extensive public consultation
  • Oversaw programme management  and advised on strategic procurement options for large infrastructure projects, flood recovery, BSF projects , property rationalization & FM as well as use of frameworks to support the local economy
  • Director responsible for Quality, Environmental and Health and Safety management to ISO standards
  • Overall responsibility for decommissioning and successful return of services and 278 staff to Cumbria County Council at end of Cumbria partnership in early 2011.


2005 – Business Centre Director responsible for £20m/year Strategic Partnership with Cumbria County Council.

  • Responsible for operational service delivery against Key Performance Indicators
  • Instrumental in successfully securing 3 year extension to partnership including agreement of new Performance Payment mechanism. 
  • Delivery of numerous projects to education sector including project management of new Academies
  • Delivery of £23m Best Value savings against target of £12m over the 10 year partnership
  • Creation of an ‘Enterprise Hub’ with local stakeholders to drive grow and jobs in support of local economy
  • Seconded part-time for 6 months to Cumbria County Council as part of team who prepared detailed business case for a unitary Council for Cumbria including development of new innovative service delivery models.


2001 – Operations  Director, responsible for co-ordination of all white collar professional services provided to Cumbria County Council (Design & Business Services) and strategic management and growth of Local Practices division (220 staff, £8M annual turnover) covering Property, Highways, Rural and Health & Safety services and Board Member of Capita Infrastructure division

  • Doubled profitability over 3 years, increased infrastructure investment through creative Local Transport Plan
  • Oversaw Programme management of annual property and highway budgets of c £70m/year including estates management for Council, Police, Further and Higher education establishments
  • Part of senior team which delivered the externalisation of Cumbria County Council Highways DSO and founder Director of Cumbria Highways a three way partnership between Cumbria County Council, Capita Symonds and Amey Infrastructure
  • Leadership of rapid response to many natural disasters in Cumbria   –flooding, foot and mouth etc.



1999 – Head of Highways and Local Property – Eight Multi disciplinary area offices.

  • Part of senior management team who created successful ‘Design & Business Services’ in house consultancy
  • Actively involved in the procurement and mobilisation of the externalisation to Capita
  • Responsibility for Countywide highways service working closely with Council blue collar DSO and a range of external contractors developing asset management approach to highway maintenance.
  • Managing public consultation and preparation of Statutory Orders for a number of major projects 


1996-2001 Lead Officer for Eden Area Committee including involvement in Strategic and Community Partnerships.

  • Best Value inspections and strategic reviews (finance, operations etc).
  • Committee reports, briefings, presentations including interaction with Eden District Council.


1995 - Management of Multi disciplinary Penrith Practice including all Highway matters below and:

  • Building Surveying; Property Maintenance; Architecture; Arboriculture, Land Agency and

Civil Engineering Laboratory

  • Countywide responsibility for Highway Maintenance Term Contract 1995-99 valued at £12 per annum


1993 -Management of Highways Area Office at Kendal and Penrith including:

  • Network Management; Highway Law; Development Control & Traffic management – Trunks and County Roads.


1989 Area Engineer – Responsible for procurement and contract management of all highways works across eastern part of Cumbria (Typically 150 No. contracts/year).


1984 Resident Engineer - Project management, site supervision and claims negotiation of major highway schemes across Cumbria including A595 Access Road to Sellafield, Annie Pitt Railway Bridge Workington, A595 Thursby Bypass, A69 Brampton Bypass and a number of M6 reconstruction schemes. Preparing and administering accommodation works including dealing with landowners.


1978 Graduate/Assistant Engineer - Highways and Bridge Design, Contract Documentation and management.      



Show Director for ‘Skelton Horticultural and Agricultural Society’ and Chairman of ‘NW Federation of Show Societies’ – both voluntary roles

Past Board member of ‘East Lancs Chamber of Commerce’ and ‘Blackburn with Darwen Local Strategic Partnership’

Past Board Member of ‘Invest in Cumbria’ and ‘Lancashire Economic Partnership’

Past national Council member and Chairman of Northern Branch of ‘The Institution of Highways & Transportation’

Past governor of Blackford Primary School.


Hobbies: Church organist, fell walking, gardening, swimming, family and event organisation.