Heath Gunter: 'I'll miss Cheltenham's friendly and helpful business community'

It was September 2021 when the board of Cheltenham BID appointed Heath Gunter as its new chief executive. Now, as he prepares to move back into the private education sector, he mulls over the lessons he's learned from managing £2.8 million of investment and grappling with a global pandemic, too.

By Emma Luther  |  Published
Heath Gunter is moving on from his role as chief executive of Cheltenham Business Improvement District this April 2024.

A new chapter awaits for Cheltenham BID's outgoing chief executive Heath Gunter. After two and a half years at the helm of the organisation that champions the town centre and its businesses, he's off to Wishford Education.

As he prepares to take on the role of commercial director for the independent education provider on Monday 22 April 2024, SoGlos caught up with him before he leaves to reflects on his career so far.

Why did you decide to make the move back into education?

I spent an amazing eight years working at Cheltenham Ladies’ College prior to taking on the role at Cheltenham BID, so it is an industry I am very familiar with. 

The opportunity with Wishford came about and it was something that really got me excited. It’s an ambitious company that matches my own career aspirations. 

What are you looking forward to in your new role?

Using my skills and expertise to enhance the already successful commercial business at Wishford.

The schools are located in some beautiful and historic buildings and I am really looking forward to bringing these venues to life by hosting more events in them.  

Are there lessons you’ve learned from Cheltenham BID that you’ll take with you?

Over the past few years, we've navigated through numerous obstacles, from the aftermath of the pandemic to grappling with the cost-of-living crisis.

In such uncertain times, flexibility and adaptability became paramount. We had to swiftly adjust our plans and strategies, sometimes even at the eleventh hour.

This has built a resilience within me — and the ability to remain composed and adaptable amidst unforeseen circumstances is a skill that I'll undoubtedly leverage in my new role.

What will you miss most about Cheltenham?

The Cheltenham business community. I’ve worked in Cheltenham for almost 15 years and have made some great connections and friends.

I have always found the community to be welcoming, friendly and genuinely wanting to help each other.   

Will you still be based in Gloucestershire?

I will primarily be based at Westonbirt School in Tetbury, but our head office is in Corsham and we have schools around the country.

How do you feel about your new challenge?

Really excited. There is so much potential to grow the business and use my entrepreneurial skills.

I'm thrilled to be part of a team that shares my vision, and I'm eager to bring my experience and enthusiasm to the table.

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