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We’re celebrating our 50th anniversary in business this year! Since our beginnings in 1973 when founders Tony Winch and Jim Chisholm began the business, we are now a 100-strong team based in Essex, working on high profile construction and fit-out projects across London and the UK, including at Heathrow Airport where we’ve had a dedicated team for more than 30 years.

“Committed, collaborative construction.”

Our signature approach to construction has fostered solid relationships with clients, subcontractors and team members and we can offer our services as a main contractor or large, multi-disciplined subcontractor. Our longstanding motto of “Committed, collaborative construction” has underpinned the success of Chisholm & Winch for the last 50 years.

During the early days of the business, the work undertaken by Tony and Jim began with shop fit outs and painting and decorating, and they gradually expanded their portfolio of contacts, undertaking larger commercial fit-out projects, and adding joinery and Mechanical and Electrical specialisms to the business.

A significant breakthrough for Chisholm & Winch came 32 years ago when the company began working with a main contractor to fit-out terminal one and two at Heathrow Airport, and then every new terminal thereafter. This led to a dedicated team based at the airport for the last three decades, undertaking all manner of works both air-side and passenger-side. The team has worked to fit around the airport’s operational requirements, often using out of hours shifts and phased programmes to maintain business as usual. We have consistently demonstrated attention to detail, focus on safety and commercial drive that has resulted in us winning one project after another here.

The new millennium marked another turning point for Chisholm & Winch. Iconic public buildings such as the V&A, Maritime Museum and the Royal Opera House received significant public funding and we played a part in their restoration and refurbishment, notably in the creation of the stunning Reading Room at the British Museum. We also collaborated with renowned architects, including Sir Norman Foster, David Chipperfield and Richard Rogers, as well as his wife Ruth at the famous River Café where a young Jamie Oliver was Sous Chef, and won a sway of high-end residential jobs in affluent parts of London.

During the past five decades, we’ve built on our track record in construction and refurbishment projects, working as a delivery partner with companies of all shapes and sizes. We’ve garnered experience across multiple disciplines and a varied array of sectors, including commercial, residential, airports and heritage, which has enabled us to secure a rich portfolio of interesting and prestigious jobs, from data centres to leisure facilities; listed buildings to contemporary office developments.

So, what’s the secret to our success?

Our unique approach to business

We have always focused on project quality and making the right commercial decisions at the right time. We nurture a collaborative, solution-focused approach to construction, with an emphasis on working closely with clients and subcontractors to achieve the best outcomes for all involved. This has helped develop strong and ongoing relationships with clients and maintain excellent staff retention.

Our ability to adapt

There have been many changes to the industry over the years including methods of procurement, the impact of digitalisation, the emphasis on sustainability and health & safety regulation. We have definitely benefited from the meticulous processes and safety-first culture stipulated at projects like Heathrow. Continual investment in training and accreditations has been necessary to maintain the high standards required.

Strong leadership makes a strong team

We are a professional team driven by the leadership of Founder, Tony Winch and Managing Director, Simon Castle who re-joined the company 28 years ago. Yes, we have encountered challenges over the years – who hasn’t in construction?! – but we have addressed these with resilience, tenacity, optimism and a clear idea as to what is right. This approach has seen us through the recession in the early 1990’s, the Millenium boom years, the 2008 financial crisis and most recently the Covid-19 pandemic.

Our 50th year – 2023 – looks set to be a great one with both new client relationships and re-establishment of some fantastic existing ones.  We look forward to the beginning of our second half century!