About us
About us

Key People

John Bilney, Managing Director

John Bilney, Managing Director

After graduating in Chemistry in 1988 John worked for Albright and Wilson, Rhone Poulenc, Petrolite and Dunlop Adhesives in various quality and commercial roles before joining Cornelius Group. In 1999 he established the Group’s first manufacturing business producing specialty monomers at Bishop’s Stortford. Sales grew and John relocated and up-scaled the plant to Haverhill in 2007 where Cornelius Specialties Ltd was formed.

Clare Whitlock, Operations Manager

Clare Whitlock, Operations Manager

Joined the company in 1998 and was instrumental in founding the company in its present form. A chemist from the University of Canterbury, she has been part of product development, process development, procedure writing and analytical method development. Clare has been active in departmentalising the company as it has expanded into its current size. As Operations Manager, Clare heads the Production, Quality, Purchasing and Customer Service departments ensuring we reach the highest level of delivery performance and quality compliance.

Joshua Kilbey-Banting, Production Manager

Joshua Kilbey-Banting, Production Manager

After some production experience in cosmetics formulators Molton Brown (8 years) and First Day Lawson (2 years) Josh joined the R&D scale up team at Cornelius Specialties Ltd in 2012. Here he honed his abilities to see process needs and understand how concepts like "ALCOA". (Attributable, Legible, Contemporaneous, Original and Accurate) deliver GMP. Josh was promoted to Production Manager in 2016 and is excelling in establishing 5S in the production facility. He has developed and motivated his team to meet KPI targets and is now focused on refining process yields and procedures.

Andrea Goodman, Quality Assurance Manager

Andrea Goodman, Quality Assurance Manager

After a spell in the Royal Air Force operating aerospace systems, Andrea took on her first quality assurance role in the pharmaceutical industry working with Baxter Healthcare. Andrea has also fulfilled quality assurance positions with the personal protective equipment manufacturer Centurion Safety Products before joining Cornelius in 2015 as a Quality Assurance Technician with 24 years quality assurance experience. Andrea made significant improvements in the workflow quality and was promoted to Quality Assurance Manager in 2017. Andrea is now heavily involved in day to day quality assurance continuous improvement.

Sukhvir Singh, Engineering Manager

Sukhvir Singh, Engineering Manager

Sukhi is a graduate mechanical engineer from the Institute of Industrial Training of Punjab, India. Sukhi came to the UK in 2005 and worked within the acrylic polymers manufacturing industry before joining Cornelius in 2010. Sukhi manages our engineering maintenance program and he and his team oversee all investment in plant and equipment as well as leading the scale up of new products that move from the laboratory and into production.

Tony Tabor, Production Planner & Coordinator

Tony Tabor, Production Planner & Coordinator

Tony joined the company in 2003 as a Process Operator, following previous roles in GSK, Pitney Bowles, British Aerospace and Ratheon Systems. He has operated many of the company’s chemical processes and has a City and Guilds in Chemical Process, Petrochemical and Pharmaceutical Operations Level 2, as well as Business Improvement Techniques Level 2. Tony was promoted to Production Planner & Coordinator in 2014 and is now responsible for scheduling production activities and resources. In this role, Tony works closely with the Production Manager and Customer Service Team to ensure we are manufacturing materials in time for our customers’ requirements. Tony is also responsible for inventory control and purchasing.

Jackie Wray, Office Manager

Jackie Wray, Office Manager

Jackie joined Cornelius Specialties Ltd in 2008 having previously worked in logistical and administration roles in the pharmaceutical industry, both in the UK and the Middle East. Jackie manages customer needs by processing sales orders, organising despatches and dealing with enquiries, she also looks after the office administration. Jackie liaises closely with the Production, Quality Control and Purchasing teams to ensure that they are kept up to date with all customer requirements and in this way ensures the company delivers the best customer service.

Dr. Chandres Surti, R&D Manager

Dr. Chandres Surti, R&D Manager

Chandres gained a PhD in the discovery of novel antibiotics from the University of East Anglia before becoming R&D Manager with Melford Laboratories, a developer and producer of novel fluoro-aromatic compounds. Upon joining Cornelius Specialties Chandres led the process to build and strengthen the R&D capability culminating in investment in a new R&D capability to house the growing research group under his charge. Chandres has a wide and varied chemical background with excellent knowledge in the synthesis and scale up of fluorochemicals, heterocyclics, peptides and carbohydrates.

Dr. Yingfa Li, Senior Researcher

Dr. Yingfa Li, Senior Researcher

Dr Li joined Cornelius Specialties in 2006 working within the R&D department. He brought with him over 15 years of research and development experience in synthetic organic chemistry. Over the years, Dr. Li has held positions of postdoctoral research associate, postdoctoral research fellow, senior chemist and university lecturer, which provided him with opportunities in varied areas of synthetic chemistry, particularly in special monomers synthesis, synthetic methodology, natural product synthesis and bioactive molecule synthesis. Dr. Li has contributed towards the publication of many technical and patent publications.

Dr. Elizabeth Smith, Organosilicones Chemist and Cosmetics Application liaison

Dr. Elizabeth Smith, Organosilicones Chemist and Cosmetics Application liaison

On completion of her PhD in organometallic chemistry at the University of York Lizzie began working in a research role at Johnson Matthey plc in Royston. Lizzie then undertook her post-doctoral research in organosilicone chemistry working jointly with the Open University and Cornelius Specialties. Lizzie now leads our efforts in silicones synthesis while spending approximately half of her time based in the cosmetics application laboratories of our sister company working closely with our formulation chemists.

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