As the snowdrops bloomed in 1993, Robert Sword became the Estate’s Director. After starting as a junior assistant agent at Hatfield Park and Badminton Estates, he joined estate management company Humberts; going on to establish their York office.
He first came across Wykeham when he was asked by the late Lord Downe, playwright Sir Alan Ayckbourn and Charles McCarthy CBE of McCains to advise on the acquisition of the old Odeon cinema, as a new home for the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough.
After this successful deal he was lured to Wykeham full time. “I have relished the challenge of managing this magnificent and beautiful estate,” says Robert. “Consultants only dip in and out of a project. In this role you live with your successes and failures; there is ultimately only one option – sort them out.” Creating and nurturing a growing business can take many years, and although Robert would be the first to recognise the huge contribution from an exceptional group of general managers, he has been instrumental in many of the estate’s recent successes, culminating in the award of the Bledisloe Gold Medal. The rest of the newsletter touches on some of his achievements.