About Us.

Our Story so Far.

Founded in 1997, Sanderson Phillips has been an authority in travel safety for more than 25 years. Operating from the UK and initially focusing on hotel accommodation risk assessments, we have grown to include the auditing of transport and activities/excursions, sustainability, modern slavery and accessibility.

We provide consultancy services to a diverse collection of travel companies and accommodation suppliers on their health and safety practices. These range from advising tour operators and travel organisations on their travel safety planning and strategy, to working with hotels on specific safety projects and creating bespoke self-assessment audits for a variety of organisations.

Our diligent, common sense auditing and risk assessment approach is backed up by relevant industry qualifications as well as extensive experience from well-travelled professionals. We are proud to act for some of the best known and most respected tour operators, travel suppliers and industry associations around the world and believe our competent, professional, assertive and fair approach is integral to our success.

Sanderson Phillips is owned and operated by Atkin Jones Limited. For more information on our Social Responsibility Charter, visit the Atkin Jones website.

Meet The Team.

David Atkin

David Atkin

Managing Director & Safety Consultant

David began his travel career at luxury tour operator Elegant Resorts in 1998, where he remained for 10 years, latterly as Head of Product. David then spent three years at ITC Luxury Travel Group as Director of Sports before joining golf and events business The Aspiration Group as a director and shareholder, where he created a new travel division and established a dedicated golf breaks programme.

David joined Sanderson Phillips in 2016, progressing to the role of Managing Director in April 2019. During his tenure, the business has grown to provide its travel safety auditing services to over 110 travel brands both in the UK and overseas, whilst introducing new risk assessment services for the Modern Slavery Act, sustainability and accessibility.

David is a Fellow of the International Institute of Risk and Safety Management, a Fellow of the Institute of Travel & Tourism, an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, holds a Professional Diploma from the Chartered Institute of Marketing and a Professional Certificate in Sustainable Tourism from the Global Sustainable Tourism Council. David also holds Level 3 Risk Assessment, Level 2 Fire Safety and Level 2 VRQ in Gas Safety Awareness qualifications.

Aimee Atkin

Aimee Atkin

Director & Safety Consultant

Aimée joined Sanderson Phillips in 2011 after holding senior account management and marketing roles with companies including Capita, Corning Optical Fibre and Z-Card. Prior to this, Aimée gained valuable experience of luxury tour operations whilst working for ITC Luxury Travel Group.

Aimée holds Level 3 Risk Assessment, Level 2 Health & Safety in the Workplace and Level 2 VRQ in Gas Safety Awareness qualifications. She also speaks fluent French, conversational Spanish and has a Professional Diploma from the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

Mick Yates

Mick Yates

Safety Consultant

Mick is a NEBOSH and IOSH Health and Safety qualified consultant and has spent over 20 years working in the travel industry, having  held Health & Safety management roles at Thomson Holidays (TUI plc), Mytravel and Thomas Cook.

Mick brings extensive experience in overseas health & safety auditing in Accommodation, Transport, Hygiene and high-risk Excursions and Activities as well as producing and delivering safety training courses. Mick has a specialism in Gas Safety and led the industry in creating gas safety policies and projects following the Corfu carbon monoxide incident in 2006.

Prior to working in travel Mick worked as a served & Gas Safe registered engineer and was a member of IGEM (Institute of Gas Engineers & Managers) and has carried out numerous gas & carbon monoxide investigations in the UK and in holiday accommodation overseas. 

Beth Alcorn

Beth Alcorn

Safety Consultant

With over 15 years’ experience in Tour Operating, Beth began her career with a successful university placement at Thomas Cook, where she took up her first permanent role having obtained her BA degree in Tourism Studies. Beth then went on to  hold respected positions within British Airways Holidays and Emirates Tours.

Beth joined the team as a freelancer in 2019, initially providing administration support but has developed to become a fully fledged member of the team, with responsiblities including auditing and operations, as well as developments to the portal and website.

Clare O'Hara

Clare O'Hara

Consultant

Clare began her career in the travel industry at British Airways Holidays and American Express Centurion Travel in sales and operational roles before joining Emirates Holidays where she worked for 10 years, holding product and marketing management roles.

In 2020 Clare set up a consultancy business offering product, marketing and copywriting services to travel and retail businesses.  Clare started working with Sanderson Phillips in 2022 with a focus on Sustainability auditing.

John Telfer

John Telfer

Consultant

John has more than 30 years’ experience in the travel industry, starting as a tour leader in Turkey and Latin America, taking the reins at Explore as Managing Director and more recently as a Non-Executive Director at Hotelplan UK Ltd.

Risk and crisis management has always been a passion, along with sustainable tourism. John was responsible for the implementation of a Safety Management System at Explore, spanning 130 countries and worked with the German development agency GIZ to create a risk management structure for developing countries.

Whilst on the AITO council, John took on the Risk Management portfolio and, over the years, has coordinated crisis response for multiple events both in the UK and for significant incidents on the ground. These have ranged from the aftermath of the ash cloud, Inghams’ response to the Covid outbreak in the Alps, to numerous localised incidents.

John shares his experiences at Surrey University, where he delivers lectures on risk and crisis management, adding the practical and real to the academic.

Victoria Westerman

Victoria Westerman

Operations Manager

With an absolute passion for travel and over 25 years experience in the industry, Victoria’s journey has been defined by a steadfast commitment to customer service/sales, risk management, safety protocols, and incident resolution. 

She spent 15 years in retail with The Cooperative Travel, before taking up a customer services role in overseas operations for Jet2 Holidays. Victoria then moved to Icelolly.com as OTA Sales Manager, managing a team of 30 contact centre and homeworking agents.

Her next role was Customer Relations & Product Health & Safety Manager at Super Break Mini Holidays, where she assumed a pivotal role in safeguarding the company’s reputation and minimising risk exposure by overseeing regulatory compliance and managing customer complaints, Before joining Sanderson Phillips/ tranquilico, Victoria held three key management positions at Great Rail Journeys – Risk & Safety/Auditing, Tour Incident Management and Product Contracting.

Victoria holds a Highfield Level 3 in Health & Safety and specialist hotel physical auditing qualifications.

Leon Auger

Leon Auger

Operations Executive

Leon began his career in the financial industry, working for the likes of Royal Bank of Scotland and AVIVA before moving into the travel world.

Initially working for TUI in various countries including Greece, Egypt, Turkey and latterly France with Crystal Ski, he then moved back to the UK, taking on roles with Low-Cost Holidays, Egencia, Expedia, and Randstad. Leon joined Atkin Jones from Jet2.

Alongside his day job, Leon volunteers at FC United of Manchester, assisting with Social Media and Marketing. His interests outside work include sports, fitness and travelling.

Max Roberts

Max Roberts

Operations Executive

Max has worked in the travel industry for over 25 years and has been proud to represent some of the world’s most respected brands, including British Airways, ILH (Relais & Châteaux), Kuoni and American Express.

He has experience in operations, customer experience and travel risk advisory. 

Max has visited 79 countries from Argentina to Zambia and his travel experience has given him extensive knowledge of cultural traditions and sensitivities across the globe. Max is an advocate for safety and sustainability across all areas of the travel industry.

Alice Henry

Alice Henry

Administration Executive

Alice graduated from Cardiff University in 2009 with a BSc in Physiotherapy, working for both the NHS and for private clients in the UK and also in Australia. She went on to become a matwork and reformer instructor through the Australian Physiotherapy and Pilates Institute (APPI). 

Alice joined Sanderson Phillips in 2014 and she now shares her work time between physiotherapy patients, instructing pilates and administration for Sanderson Phillips. 

Graham Phillips

Graham Phillips

Founder & Safety Consultant

Graham’s illustrious career in the travel industry has spanned 50 years. His first positions were with London-based operators Global Tours and Ski Plan before heading up the Pacific region for Jetset Tours from their offices in Melbourne. On his return to the UK, Graham become Long Haul Product Manager at Thomas Cook Holidays, before launching Silk Cut Travel as Director & General Manager. He then spent eight years as General Manager of Product at Chester-based luxury tour operator Elegant Resorts.

Having identified an opportunity to provide health and safety consultancy services to the travel industry, Graham founded Sanderson Phillips in 1997. He successfully led and developed the business to become a well-known and respected name within the leisure travel industry, growing steadily and carving a niche working for luxury tailor-made tour operators. Graham chose to take a back seat in April 2019, moving into a part-time consultancy role. He holds qualifications in Advanced Health & Safety and Risk Assessment and has visited 100 countries and counting.

What People Are Saying.

“Sanderson Phillips have acted as our hotel safety assessment consultants since 2000. Effective and compliant health & safety management is core to our business and with the help of Sanderson Phillips we know that our guests are safe in the hotels we book for them. Graham, David, Aimee and the whole team at Sanderson Phillips are knowledgeable, responsive and a pleasure to work with. Sanderson Phillips’ online portal allows us quick and easy access to live hotel audit results that we can access from anywhere in the world.”

Harriet Stewart
Manager DMC Support, Abercrombie & Kent

“We have worked closely with Sanderson Philips for many years and are confident we can rely on their knowledge, professionalism and adaptability to deliver an excellent service. Their recent technology upgrade (with more upgrades in the pipeline) means their service is now, more than ever, equipped to respond to the changing demands of the market.”

Graham Upton
Assistant Manager, Trailfinders

“ITC Travel Group has worked in partnership with Sanderson Phillips for over 20 years and we appreciate the comprehensive service that they provide us with, not only through their regular updates highlighting any changes to hotel gradings but also by their willingness to give prompt advice and assistance in response to any more general questions that we might have within the field of hotel safety. In recent years their online portal has enhanced the service that they provide, giving us a quick and easy way of checking the exact safety status of a particular property at any given time.”

Helen Tabois
Senior Product & Marketing Manager, ITC Travel Group

“We have worked with Sanderson Phillips for many years now and we see them as a vital part of our business. From the in-house system to the ease of picking up the phone and speaking to the team, we know that the information we gather from Sanderson Phillips is up to date and accurate. It is through the support and knowledge of Sanderson Phillips that we confidently know we are acting responsibly, and our guests are travelling to safe properties. We would highly recommend Sanderson Phillips.”

Charlotte Dent
Product Manager, Scott Dunn

“LATA has partnered with Sanderson Phillips since 2008 to provide safety information to it members, helping to ensure that LATA Members can operate to the highest standards. We have always found Sanderson Phillips a delight to work with, and feedback from our members has always been extremely positive.”

Danny Callaghan
General Manager, Latin American Travel Association

“Specialist Journeys have been working with Sanderson Phillips for a number of years to ensure that tour accommodation meets safety regulations. We have built a strong relationship and staff at Sanderson Phillips are always happy to answer questions. Their service provides a valuable online portal which enables Specialist Journeys staff to view the progress of audits and action any booking restrictions which must be met. We continue to work together to ensure the safety of guests and staff.”

Sophie Empson
Health & Safety Manager, Specialist Journeys

“Having known Graham and David professionally for years, there was no hesitation in utilising the Hotel Assessment services of Sanderson Phillips. Their combined global knowledge and extensive travel expertise provides EDEN with the reassurance we need for our esteemed clients. As a luxury travel business, we find the online portal invaluable and rely on it regularly to check luxury hotels throughout the world. All the Sanderson Phillips team are very helpful with any questions and having annual meetings with David keeps us all up-to-speed with current regulations and industry challenges.”

Jenny Jones
Product Director, Eden Luxury Travel

“Without Sanderson Philips, we would not have been able to grow our hotel portfolio in such a safe and sustainable way. Advice is clear, confident and practical, queries are turned around efficiently and the recent introduction of their on-line portal has made updates instantly accessible achieving many operational benefits. I have known David for many years of working in the same sector of the travel industry and always find him and Aimée a pleasure to work with.”

Mark Hibbert
Operations Director, Lusso

“Sanderson Phillips has been a valued partner of Black Tomato for several years; their thoroughness and insight have proved invaluable as we have expanded across destinations. The online portal is an excellent interface, which we use on a daily basis. We also appreciate having their wonderful team on hand for tailored advice and support. An indispensable resource for any travel company. ”

Carolyn Addison
Head of Product, Black Tomato

“We have worked with Sanderson Phillips for well over a decade, and their regular property reports and excellent online system are an integral part of our risk management processes. They understand our needs and requirements, and we would not hesitate to recommend them to others in the travel industry.”

Tom Barber
Co-founder, Original Travel

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