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McLean director goes

Contracting director leaves David McLean following millions in cost overruns

THE MANAGING director of David McLean's construction division has left the company following cost overruns.

Ken Dalton, who had spent 17 years at the privately owned company, based in Deeside, near Chester, went last week.

Mr Dalton ? who was unavailable for comment ? had been suspended pending an investigation into an estimated £2.5 million cost overrun on two David McLean student accommodation projects in Liverpool and Manchester.

A company spokesman said: 'Ken Dalton has moved on to pursue other business interests.' He will be succeeded as boss of the contracting division by Mike Wickham, who currently heads David McLean's retail operation.

Mr Wickham will oversee a merger of the contracting and retail operations and a review of all working methods 'to ensure that they continue the emphasis on service delivery and customer focus'.

The company has also appointed John Caunce as managing director of David McLean Design. The division will act as a service provider for the other group operations, overseeing designs for the company's large mixed-use and residential developments.

The company will now operate as four divisions: construction, homes, developments and design. Through these it has developed specialisms including prestige house building, regeneration, student accommodation and retail.

Founder David McLean said:'This new management structure provides many opportunities for all at David McLean to develop their careers, develop the business and deliver the company's core values.' David McLean is working on more than 75 projects across the UK. In the year to June 2005 it anticipates record-breaking financial results with a turnover of £220 million.

In May it acquired privately owned house builder Jennings Group, based in the Midlands, for £38.5 million as part of a growth strategy aimed at propelling it into the industry's top 10 by 2015.