B&Q lays off ad chief as shake-up begins to bite

B&Q has made advertising chief Breffni Walsh redundant after just over a year in the role as part of a reshuffle of the company’s senior management team.

As marketing controller, part of Walsh’s brief was to handle the company’s £30m advertising spend. Her position will remain vacant while the company decides on the future structure of its marketing department.

Until a decision is made, Walsh’s advertising duties will be taken by director of special order marketing Justin Lees. The reshuffle has so far not affected the DIY retailer’s marketing director, David Roth.

Prior to her appointment at B&Q in August last year, Walsh was head of advertising and branding at Thomson Holidays. She has also worked in marketing positions for Pizza Hut, Dorothy Perkins and Forte Hotels.

The decision comes at the same time as B&Q announces the retirement of chief executive Bill Whiting. He is being replaced by commercial managing director Rob Cissell.

Meanwhile, Helen Weir has resigned as group finance director, to be replaced by Duncan Tatton-Brown, currently finance director of B&Q stores. Group commercial director George Adams has been promoted to the new post of chief executive, commercial.

B&Q has announced total reported UK sales in the last quarter were up by 8.2 per cent. One new Warehouse store and two mini-Warehouses were opened in the quarter.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here