UK: Contractors’ group BESA has appointed Cat Griffith-Williams as its new head of Wales following the retirement of Andrew Marchant.

Cat joins from the communications agency Grayling, where she was responsible for its overall strategy in Wales and charged with enhancing the agency’s offer to existing and new clients. 

She oversaw public affairs, strategic partnerships and stakeholder relations; helping organisations such as BT, the European Commission and the Landscape Institute in Wales maximise their communications potential.

“I am looking forward very much to working with BESA members in Wales,” she said. “Our local presence allows us to respond to the specific needs of the building engineering sector here while also taking advantage of a national network that offers extensive technical and legal expertise.”

She said there was a huge amount of current business activity in Wales directly relevant to the work of BESA members and significant policy developments around training and apprenticeships that could be exploited to the benefit of members’ businesses.

“This is a key appointment for the Association,” said BESA membership director Wayne Terry. “We have had a very strong local presence in Wales for many years and Cat is just the sort of person we were looking for to take our technical and policy agendas forward into the future.

Andrew Marchant

“She understands the issues very well and her extensive background in policy and communications will make her a huge asset to existing and prospective members.”

Cat was previously deputy director and head of external affairs at the Campaign for the Protection of Rural Wales and has given evidence to the Welsh National Assembly. She contributed to legislation and has produced briefing papers and advice to the membership on responding to planning applications.

Andrew Marchant had been a stalwart in the building and engineering services sector in Wales and the South West, throughout a long and illustrious career spanning almost 50 years. He also represented BESA at the SEC Group and worked tirelessly to promote BESA members’ interests with the Welsh Government.