Meet Tom, Development Manager at Treveth
It goes without saying that Treveth’s land and planning team is fundamental to bringing high-quality new homes and commercial developments to Cornish people. Our developments all start with the land they occupy and having the skills to identify land which has the potential to be turned into a thriving, sustainable community is incredibly important.
We have a team of land and planning experts at Treveth who bring a variety of skills to the table. An important member of that team is Tom Davey, one of our Development Managers who began his career at Treveth in June 2023.
Having lived in Cornwall for almost his whole life , Tom brings over 13 years’ experience to the team and has a varied background, having not only worked for several regional developers and national agents , but also trying to make it as a professional triathlete!
We caught up with Tom to find out why he swapped the running track for a career in housing and development and how he has found his first few months at Treveth.
Hi Tom! Tell us about your background in the housing and construction industry…
“I have quite a varied background in the industry. Starting 13 years ago as a Junior Negotiator for an estate agency, I progressed to specialise in new build home sales and marketing, working as a new homes Sales Manager. I then switched it up and worked in the construction supply chain for a short time before moving on to work directly for developers. I’ve worked for several different regional developers and over that time, have been involved at all stages of the development process, from securing land at an early stage and obtaining planning permission right through to overseeing the sales and marketing of the end product which has given me a great understanding of the whole ‘cradle to grave’ process.
“So, I have experience in both sales and land and planning. I made the switch from sales as I fancied a new challenge and always found the land side of things quite interesting. I enjoy the process of identifying a new site and the potential it has to be turned into a new development. It’s satisfying to work in placemaking, bringing new developments forward to benefit not only the prospective new residents, but the wider community in the local area.”
Why did you decide to pursue a career in the industry?
“Well, it wasn’t always the plan. After University, I decided to focus on triathlon and tried to become a professional triathlete! Unfortunately it didn’t quite work out the way I had hoped and I quickly realised that I needed to get a full-time job to fund my passion. I took an opportunity at an estate agency in my local town and haven’t looked back! Triathlon is still an important part of my life now but I take it slightly less seriously than I used to!”
Describe your job role and your main responsibilities at Treveth…
“As Development Manager, I work in the early stages of identifying potential development sites and look at the feasibility to decide whether a piece of land has potential.. If it does, I work with the team to create an offer and secure the land. I then project manage the planning process which involves working with a number of different stakeholders and consultants and of course liaising with the local community and public to show them our plans and what we are proposing. If we achieve planning permission, I hand it across to the construction team to deliver the development.”
What is a typical day like as Development Manager?
“My days are quite varied as I look at lots of different aspects, different sites and in different parts of Cornwall which is great as you’re not always just looking at one area. A typical day for me would be having meetings with the design team on a project and potentially going to visit a site to assess its suitability for development. It’s always helpful to see a site first-hand rather than just looking at the area on Google Maps. Of course, there’s the slightly less exciting but necessary jobs to get done such as paperwork, dealing with invoices, proposals, and emails. I also have the responsibility of keeping the rest of the team updated on my projects and to ensure everyone knows the timescales and current stage we are at.”
What do you enjoy about being Development Manager at Treveth? What challenges do you face?
“I’m really enjoying the general team vibe at Treveth. Everyone is working towards the same outcome, to deliver high-quality, sustainable new homes and commercial developments to benefit people who live and work in Cornwall, and it’s a real team effort. Treveth’s product is so different to that of other developers which is really refreshing, and I like looking at all the different aspects that go into the making of a development. It’s not just about the houses. We’re looking at the open space, ecology, and the sustainability of developments, all of which are equally important as the actual design of the house.
“Planning applications are always a challenge as there are so many different elements that go into an application nowadays. Another challenge is the general state of the property market at the moment which is very different to where we’ve been in recent years. Ensuring that everyone is happy whilst bringing a development forward always comes with its challenges but that’s what keeps our jobs interesting.”
What stands out for you about Treveth as an employer?
“It’s clear that Treveth wants to make a positive impact on Cornwall. I love Cornwall having lived here for almost my entire life, and I’m now bringing up my kids here, so it’s incredibly important to me to work for a developer that has a strong purpose and considers why we are building these communities and why we design them in the way that we do with a focus on local people. Treveth’s ‘Profit with Purpose’ ethos is so different to others who are building across the county and that is why I enjoy working with the company.”
What benefits do you bring to the role and to Treveth?
“As I have a sales background as well as a development background, I can bring a slightly different perspective to land and planning processes. I understand the importance of designing the right product that the end user will love, and is appropriate for the area of Cornwall we are working in. It’s all very well designing a site and achieving planning permission for it, but it’s important to ensure what you are bringing forward is right for the end user so that we can sell and rent the right sort of homes to local people who really need them, as well as provide benefits to the local area as well. My sales background gives the team an alternative way of looking at a development from the end users point of view.
“Having lived and worked in Cornwall for years, I know Cornwall very well so have good knowledge of the local area which helps me assess sites quickly and the potential pitfalls and key issues to consider.”
Finally, do you have any aims or goals that you would like to achieve as Development Manager?
“I’d like to continue delivering high-quality, sustainable developments to benefit Cornish people and would like to achieve my Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) qualification in due course.”