Hilton boss Steve Cassidy appointed chair of UKHospitality

13 June 2023 by
Hilton boss Steve Cassidy appointed chair of UKHospitality

Steve Cassidy, managing director of Hilton UK & Ireland, has been named chair of UKHospitality.

He will take over the role at the trade body's summer conference and AGM tomorrow (14 June), replacing Steve Richards, chief executive of Parkdean Resorts, who served as chair from 2018 and replaces Nick Varney as president.

Cassidy, who was most recently vice-chair, has been an integral member of the UKHospitality Board since it was formed as a merger between the British Hospitality Association (BHA) and Association of Licenced Multiple Retailers (ALMR) in 2018.

He has over 30 years' experience in the travel industry and joined Hilton in 2009, where he heads the business across more than 170 hotels in the UK, Ireland and Israel.

Cassidy said: "I am incredibly proud to become chair of UKHospitality, an organisation that has supported and championed our industry with such passion and drive, especially through the recent tough years we have endured.

"Our industry is unique in its ability to create economic value, enable social mobility and build communities. I look forward to working with Kate and the UKHospitality Board to further galvanise our powerful sector and speak with a united voice to Government, helping deliver meaningful change for our members, benefitting the whole of the UK."

Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKHospitality, said: "There's never been a more important time to have one voice to Government and I know that Steve will continue working across our broad membership for the betterment of the sector, as he did in his role as vice-chair.

"UKHospitality is continuing to build on its success – bringing in new members from across the sector and further extending our work across hospitality, tourism and leisure – and I'm looking forward to working with Steve to develop our offering even further."

Nicholls added: "I'd like to thank Steve Richards for his diligent service to UKHospitality since its inception five years ago, and for his dedication in his time as chair, where his leadership and ability to bring people together had a hugely positive impact on our sector, particularly during the pandemic."

The board has also seen several changes, with new members including:

  • Fiona Eastwood, chief operating officer, Midway and Resort Theme Parks at Merlin Entertainment
  • Simon Emeny, chief executive, Fullers
  • Steve Holmes, chief executive, Azzurri Group
  • Dave McDowall, chief executive, Stonegate Group
  • Rob Pitcher, chief executive, Revolution Bars Group
  • Martin Robinson, non-exec director, Burger King, Parkdean Resorts and Travelodge
  • Catherine Roe, chief executive, Elior

Leaving the Board after full terms are Paul Wigham, chief executive, All Our Bars; Wendy Bartlett, executive chairman, BM Caterers; Peter Marks, executive chairman, REKOM UK; Calum Ross, proprietor, Loch Melfort Hotel and Restaurant; and Nick Varney, former chief executive, Merlin Entertainment.

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