Leeds Beckett forms new partnership to boost growth of Doncaster-based Westdale Group

Marketing experts at Leeds Beckett University have teamed up with Doncaster-based Westdale Group Ltd to support the company’s ambitious plans for growth – and help them meet the increasing demand for home energy efficiency projects crucial to the Government’s net zero plans.

The project is a two-year Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP), part-funded by the Government through Innovate UK. Academics based in Leeds Business School will work closely with the Westdale management team to enable them to achieve sustainable growth in their existing, and new markets – including investigating opportunities to diversify their expert services.

Westdale Group Limited are a provider of whole house refurbishment services – such as external wall, cavity wall, and loft insulation – through a group of companies. They specialise in projects for local authorities, housing associations and contractors for both social housing and commercial properties. They also design and manufacture their own high performance insulation products under the brands Structherm and ArtBrick.

Dr Catherine Ashworth, Senior Lecturer in Global and Strategic Marketing at Leeds Beckett University and KTP project lead, explained: “Westdale is well regarded in the industry and this project will support them in leveraging this reputation to increase market share to grow both turnover and profit. By embedding advanced strategic marketing and new branding capabilities, we will improve Westdale’s position in the supply chain and procurement frameworks, realising their ambition to bid for larger and more prestigious contracts.

“Through this partnership, we will address a complex set of challenges, creating a more sustainable platform for onward growth and embedding a business model across the group of companies, that is more dynamic and agile. As a result, Westdale will be better able to respond to meet the expanding demand for refurbishment projects which are crucial to achieving the Government’s net zero ambitions.”

Malcolm Kitching, Co-Founder and Director of Westdale Group Limited, said: “Building on our strong growth over the last five years, this partnership with Leeds Beckett will allow us to develop a dynamic strategy for planned and sustainable growth, based on improved market intelligence, sharing of knowledge, and strengthening of our brand across the group.

“We will also work together to evaluate market opportunities in emerging technologies within our services, for example heat pumps and solar panels.”

The work will be managed by a KTP Associate – a skilled graduate who will be recruited as a full-time member of Westdale, with the full support of the Leeds Beckett academic team. Alongside Dr Ashworth will be a team of experts in Leeds Business School, including Dr Carl Clare, Senior Lecturer in Strategy.

Westdale will have the opportunity to work with research academics across Leeds Beckett University, including experts in the field of construction materials and building energy efficiency based in the Leeds Sustainability Institute and School of Built Environment, Engineering and Computing. Leeds Beckett students will have opportunities to benefit from the collaboration through student projects and learning through teaching and real-life case studies.

The KTP Associate job role – Strategic Transformation Manager – is now live, closing on 17 June 2024. For more information and to apply please visit

Leeds Beckett University is in the top 10% of universities in the UK for the size of its KTP programme.