Area Directors

Area Directors

Simon Howes – Area Director

Simon Howes has more than 25 years experience in engineering and manufacturing in both the UK and overseas.  He joined MAS at its launch in 2002 as one of the first manufacturing advisors for the South West. His initial focus was primarily on operational improvements, efficiency and lean manufacturing.

After spending two years as Business Development Director in the South West from 2008, Simon was appointed as Managing Director for the region in 2010 where he was responsible for enhancing the MAS service.

“We took MAS beyond its original focus on operational efficiency on the shop floor into the boardroom,” said Simon. “We created a pioneering strategic management programme, which encouraged directors to take a business-wide, strategic view of the business, identifying their scope for growth.”

After MAS was launched as a national service on the 3rd January 2012, Simon was appointed as Area Director for South England where he continues to play a pivotal role in championing the manufacturing sector.

“Recent economic conditions have made it a challenging time for businesses but through continually pushing their innovation and quality South West manufacturers can continue to stand out and succeed. There are lots of positive aspects to our industry and manufacturing isn’t ‘talked up’ nearly enough, so initiatives such as the Made in the South West are particularly welcome,” said Simon.


David Caddle – Area Director

He has several years consulting experience throughout the supply chain, leading to significant enhanced quality, cost and delivery performance. David is an experienced engineer with a post-graduate qualification in manufacturing systems, and is also a member of The Institute of Quality Assurance.

David joined MAS in January 2002 and led the South East region, developing strong working relationships with stakeholders and delivery partners and taking responsibility for the successful delivery of targeted support to the region’s manufacturers.  David is now Area Director for London and the South East.

David’s qualifications include an MSc in Advanced Manufacturing Technology and Prince 2 Project Management, he is also a  Six Sigma Black Belt and a NLP Certified Business Practitioner, Associate IEMA, and a Member of the Chartered Quality Institute.


Martin Coats – Area Director

These include the Manufacturing Advisory Service East Midlands, two East Midlands High Growth programmes, the West Midlands High Growth programme and various ERDF projects . Martin has also been responsible for delivering business support programmes in the East of England and the South East including Supply London, Supply Peterborough, EEDA LEEP and as subcontract deliverer of a Supplier Development programme in London.

Through Martin’s successful stewardship, MAS has provided a return of £32 for every £1 spent while businesses participating on High Growth programmes have grown by in excess of £220,000.

Martin also has the experience of starting, owning and growing an SME in the recruitment industry. This specialist recruitment company recruited sales professionals to the FMCG, Medical and Business Service sectors. The business had a many successes in developing partnerships with a number of FTSE 250 and Fortune 500 companies as well as high growth SMEs.


Lorraine Holmes – Area Director

Lorraine spent the first 18 years of her career in the chemicals industry, firstly for the Industrial Adhesive Division of Henkel Chemicals where she was involved in new product development and technical sales before moving into international sales and marketing.  She subsequently moved to Ameron Inc and was responsible for the international sales of protective coatings and finishes across all industry sectors from food production to defence.

She has spent the last 15 years in a number of organisations involved in the delivery of business support contracts, including CEO of Shropshire Chamber and CEO of Business Link West Midlands, before taking up the post of CEO at WMMC.