A recently rebranded estate agents is continuing its growth plans with the appointment of a sales director and an apprentice.

Clarke Munro, which was previously known as Thirlwells, is the oldest estate agency in Teesside, with two super branches in Middlesbrough and Billingham.

The firm rebranded in September, taking the names of partners Wendy Clarke and Nicola Munro, and has now taken on Richard Towler as sales director and Kyle Tranter as an apprentice viewer.

Wendy said: “We already have an experienced valuation team, and we felt the time was right to take on a dedicated sales director. Richard has a wealth of experience, having spent more than a decade in the London property market, and we’re looking forward to hearing his new ideas and innovative ways to drive the department forward.”

Richard, who is originally from North Yorkshire, added: “I’ve worked in estate agency for around 13 years, most recently as a manager at London agency Marsh & Parsons.

“I’ve been aware of Clarke Munro and its excellent reputation in the area for some time now, and, when I met Wendy and Nicola, it was clear this was an exciting company with a bright future.

“I felt that this ambitious business was the right fit for me and I’m looking forward to delivering great results for clients and helping to develop the company.”

In a further boost, the firm has also taken on Kyle as an apprentice accompanied viewer – a career path both Wendy and Nicola have experience of.

Nicola said: “We are passionate about employing apprentices. Wendy and I started as office juniors and worked our way up through the ranks, as have many of our team who have worked for the company for years.

“The opportunity became available for an accompanied viewer position and we felt the post was ideal for an apprentice so they could learn and train within the industry.

“Kyle is very much a people person, so, with our intense training and his personality, we see a very bright future for him.

“We like to start them young so we can mould them to the Clarke Munro way. Customer service is very important to us, so this lesson starts from day one, and our internal training program is intense as we want them to be the best in the business.”

Kyle, who recently graduated from Teesside University, added: “While I have no previous experience of working in an estate agents, once I sat down with Wendy and Nicola and learned more about the company’s goal and the role I would be playing, I was hooked and couldn’t wait to get started.

“I have always prided myself on my presentation in everything I do, so I’m looking forward to showing properties in their best light.

“The apprenticeship will give me valuable experience, and I’m pleased to have the opportunity to work with the team to make sure that buyers and sellers benefit from all their knowledge.”

Clarke Munro, which employs more than 20 staff across its branches, opened as Thirlwells in June 1977 – making it the longest serving independent estate agency in the area.