THE managing director of Senior Hargreaves, Kevin White, has retired after 40 years with the Bury ventilation ductwork specialists.

He started with the Lord Street company as an estimator in 1971 and progressed steadily through the business. Mr White became contracts manager in 1984, contracts director in 1991, deputy managing director in 1998 and managing director in 2003.

During his time in contracts, he supervised the installation of finely finished stainless steel ductwork on the iconic Lloyd’s building in London.

Other notable projects included the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre, Sizewell B nuclear power station and the Glaxo laboratories at Stevenage.

As managing director, Mr White has overseen significant changes. With the encouragement of parent company Senior Plc and the full support of the Hargreaves board, he initiated major modernisation.

This saw a focus on special contracts, the introduction of lean manufacturing, enhanced quality systems and a policy of steadily improving environmental standards.

Mr White said: “These changes have made us a more focussed, costaware, profitable and sustainable business that is able to rise to current market challenges and face the future with confidence.”

He has also played a considerable part in supporting the industry through his involvement with the HVCA (Heating and Ventilating Contractors’ Association) and other recognised bodies.

Mr White has handed over responsibilities to Tim Hopkinson, the new chief executive, and will remain as a consultant to the company over coming months.

In his retirement, he aims to improve his golf handicap, work on the garden and has plans for international travel.