Firm on the move after 90 years

John R Chambers is one of the best known businessmen in East Yorkshire.

Friday, 14th November 2014, 10:53 am
Chambers Quay Road Bridlington. New Offices. Pictured, Lynn Brown, Beth Dockray, Gina Cowan, John Chambers. -- NBFP PA1443-4c

A chartered surveyor and property valuer, he has served thousands of clients over a rich career spanning more than five decades.

Now 78, Mr Chambers, of Lund, shows no signs of retiring and enjoys a jet set lifestyle, making several trips abroad each year as a high profile representative of an international organisation.

His business, Chambers Chartered Surveyors, is going from strength to strength and after 90 years at 31 Quay Road, Bridlington, his offices have recently moved lock, stock and barrel across the road - to 34 Quay Road.

Mr Chambers, formerly a keen and accomplished yachtsman who sailed regularly in Cowes, is an avid supporter of local sport and a sponsor of the Star Inn football team in Driffield.

Here, he tells content editor Steve Petch about the history of his company:

“The business was founded in 1919 by my godfather Tom Spark, along with his colleague James Cumming and they called the initial firm Cumming and Spark and they practiced as estate agents, valuers and agents for the Halifax Building Society.

My father Harold joined the firm as an articled clerk when he was 16 and became a partner in the firm in 1934.

My godfather’s son, Bob Spark, joined the firm after the second world war for a number of years.

In 1958, father became the sole principal in the firm and changed the name to G Harold Chambers.

After I qualified in Hull with B. L.Wells, I then joined Broader and Spencer and in 1980 I founded the firm of Chambers, with offices in Hull and Bridlington, specialising in commercial and residential work and agency.

In 1980, I was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and also of the Incorporated Society of Valuers and Auctioneers.

My father had been the president of the East Riding branch of the Incorporated Society of Valuers and Auctioneers and, because of that position, he sat on the General Council of the organisation in London.

I joined the East Yorkshire branch and, in 1986, I became president of the East Riding branch and, while representing the branch in London over the next few years, became Chairman of the Professional Practice Committee of the organisation.

In 1993, I became president of the Incorporated Society of Valuers and Auctioneers and, during my presidential year, as a guest, attended the World Congress of the International Real Estate Federation (FIABCI) at their congress in Israel and subsequently, as my father had done, I also joined the organisation.

In the late 1990s, I progressed through the various committees of the organisation, becoming President of its professional organisation in 1999 and, in 2001, I was elected to the governing council of FIABCI, becoming President of the Professional Division.

At present, I sit on the executive board.

In 1982, I had joined my father as a partner in his practice and subsequently on his retirement changed the name of the firm to Chambers Chartered Surveyors, closing my High Street, Bridlington, and Hull Offices and concentrating on 31 Quay Road.

Because of the East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s current regeneration plans, they have acquired the offices at 31 Quay Road and for the last two or three years I have been looking to relocate.

We have now acquired a lease at 34 Quay Road and, after more than 90 years at 31 Quay Road, we are moving across the road to 34.

Whether or not we shall be there for another 90 years is in the lap of the gods.”