Managing Director

Brett founded 1st Line Defence in 2011, and with over 20 years within the UXO world from his time in the army and from the commercial industry, Brett brings a huge amount of knowledge and experience to the business. Brett instilled a philosophy into the company from the beginning of being upfront and completely honest with our customers and providing/recommending only services that are required and of not scaremongering with additional services that are not necessary.

Director of Finance and Business Management

Nikki has 26 years’ experience working in Finance and Business Management. After retiring her career working for an Investment Bank in 2014 to have her son she returned to work to join 1st Line Defence. Nikki works in close partnership with the company’s management team and is highly focused on risk and quality management for the business.

Senior Technical Manager

Mark has a strong military background having served 15 years with the British Army and 3 years with the Australian Defence Force. Since leaving the forces he has been involved with commercial Unexploded Ordnance Mitigation for the last 11 years. During this period he has lead Explosive Ordnance Disposal Rapid Response and Battle Area Clearance teams within Lebanon and worked on a variety of European Marine UXO surveys along with many other UK projects. Mark has been with 1st Line Defence since its foundation.

Head of Research and Marketing

After graduating from the University of Southampton in 2004, Phil has worked in the commercial UXO sector since 2005, overseeing thousands of UXO Risk Assessments across the UK, offshore and internationally. Phil heads the 1st Line Defence Research Department, ultimately overseeing the quality and content of the reports and ensuring that high standards in research, analysis and conclusions are met. Phil is also responsible for Marketing, tasked with the promotion and development of the business via managing exhibitions, presentations and news/social media.

Operations Manager

After graduating from her Bachelors with honours in the US, Lana went on to complete a master’s degree in London before joining 1st Line Defence in 2013. Since then, she has worked in the commercial UXO sector and managed hundreds of projects across the UK. Lana heads the Operations Department and is responsible for providing excellence and high quality standards across our teams and services

Finance Manager

Matt joined the business in 2019 coming in to manage the Finance Department. He has worked in a commercial finance role for almost 20 years and brings a wealth of experience gained from working in various different industries including Telecommunications, Exhibitions and Property Management. As a member and finalist of ACCA, he brings with him core skills such as financial analysis, finance management and financial reporting. Outside of work Matt is a keen sportsman both watching and playing and enjoys listening to live music.

Business Development Manager

Zara’s role includes leading a team of in-house consultants and account managers to look after all of your project’s needs. She graduated from Brighton University with a degree in Psychology and has pursued a career in client relationship management in the Construction industry. Zara is an avid netball player and spends her time outside the office coaching her own netball club.

Research QA Manager

After graduating with a degree in History and English Literature from Lancaster University, Matthew started his career path at 1st Line Defence. A member of the Research Department since 2013 he was promoted to Senior Researcher in 2015 and now holds the position of Research QA Manager, overseeing a team of report reviewers. With a keen interest in military history and painstaking attention to detail, Matthew ensures the continuous improvement and development of our research process, archives and report quality.

Business Development Consultant

Janette joined our sales team in 2016, quickly progressing to Senior Account Manager, specialising in handling larger and more complex projects, and developing strong and enduring relationships with clients. With more than 15 years of account management experience, much of it within the construction sector, Janette brings considerable knowledge and know-how to the team.

Operations Supervisor

After starting with the business in 2018 as Assets and Logistics Co-ordinator, Liam has since gone on to cement himself as a key member of the Operations department, recently earning promotion to Operations Supervisor. Prior to this, Liam had spent 7-10 years working in the I.T and logistics industries, with the majority of this time spent working as an Operations, Inventory or Logistics Manager.

Research Manager

Alex manages the team of Project Researchers. He ensures that both individual reports and the entire report writing process are constantly being reviewed and improved. Within 1st Line Defence, he was a Project Researcher for two years and the Senior Researcher for another year, writing over 200 reports. He graduated from the University of Bradford in 2013 with a degree in History (Modern European). He maintains an interest in reading, travelling and music.

QSHE Advisor

Diane has over 12 years’ experience in Managing ISO Standards and joined our Business Management Team in Feb 2020 as our QSHE Advisor. Diane heads the audit function and, working with the Management Team, ensures our compliance with required legislation and standards. Diane loves getting out into the countryside, and enjoys taking long walks with the family dog.

Project Geophysicist

Ross graduated in 2018 with a BSc in Geology, followed by an MSc in Petroleum Reservoir Geoscience from the University of Liverpool in 2019. He is particularly interested in the 2D/3D modelling of seismic, wireline and core analysis data for reservoir characterisation and evaluation of carbon capture and storage site suitability. Since joining 1st Line Defence he works on the analysis and interpretation of geophysical data obtained from both Intrusive and Non-Intrusive magnetometer surveys.


Our growing operations department are at the centre of what we do on a day-to-day basis. They are the team who manage all of the logistics involved in deploying our ground engineers, support services, equipment and vehicles around the UK. Our geophysicists collate, quality check and interpret the data we collect during our surveys, allowing us to model anomalies which may require investigation.


Meet our sales team – our friendly, helpful, first point of call for most of our enquiries. Our team will work with you to understand your requirements, explain our services and help to determine exactly what is needed in order to de-risk your project. They are happy to offer help, advice and consultancy, and are always here to field any questions you may have or to put you in touch with the right contact.


Our expert financial team keeps everything operating smoothly behind the scenes and keeps track of our growth and assets. They are responsible for credit control, budgeting, payroll, forecasts and financial analysis of our company.


Our full-time in-house research team of enthusiastic graduate historians undertake the research and investigation for hundreds of preliminary and detailed UXO risk assessments every year. They are tasked with accessing, investigating and compiling archival data, aerial imagery, mapping, plans and written records, to determine what occurred historically on your site.

No stone is left unturned, and the team make every effort to access as much information as possible to assist us in making an assessment of risk.

Looking for more information about 1st Line Defence?

Our friendly and transparent approach helps us build long-standing relationships with our clients – contact us to find out more.

Call: +44 (0) 1992 245020 or Email: