Dr Michael Oglesby CBE, DL, LLD, DSc is the founder of the Bruntwood Group of companies, which is privately held and owned by the Family. The companies have grown from a modest beginning to becoming one of the leading commercial property owners in the English Regions in the last 40 years. The Company owns in excess of 120 buildings in Central and South Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Birmingham, comprising approximately 8,800,000 sq ft with a value in excess of £1 billion. In Manchester city centre, the Company owns approximately 20% of the commercial office space.
At the end of 2013, Michael gave up all executive responsibility in the Company as he approached the age of 75 and now devotes his time to a broad portfolio of activities which cover the arts, civic roles, philanthropy, health and education.
He is Chairman of the Steering Board for the Manchester Cancer Research Centre and The Oglesby Charitable Trust where, along with his wife Jean, daughter Kate and daughter-in-law Jane, he is actively involved in its day-to-day activities. The Trust has rapidly grown into one of the Region’s major charitable giving organizations. To date it has donated in excess of £10 million to over 300 charities. Alongside this role, he is also responsible for the community giving in Bruntwood which, together with the Trust, amounts to over £3 million per annum.
The Oglesby Charitable Trust sees itself as more than a financial donor by adopting a hands on role to all its relationships. Not only does it give to a broad variety of organisations in the fields of education, medical research, the arts and social inequalities but it also works strategically with expert partners to commission or develop new research and initiatives. Information on four of the major initiatives instigated by the Trustees, Shared Health Foundation, Focussed Care, FASTN and City of Trees can be accessed below, as can details of the Trust.
Michael sits on the Manchester LEP Board and the Global Leadership Board for the University of Manchester. He is a Vice President of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine and, as a Feoffee of Chetham’s School of Music, leads the team responsible for building the new School of Music in Manchester. He is also an ambassador for the Woodland Trust.
He is a past Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Royal Northern College of Music, MIDAS (responsible for Inward Investment in Manchester) and the Carol Concert Committee of the CLIC Sargent Children’s Cancer Charity. He also sat on the Board of the North West Business Leadership Team and the the High Sheriff’s Police Trust.
In 2006 he was voted Businessman of the Year in the North West by the CBI and in May 2006 he received an honorary law doctorate from the University of Manchester. In June 2007 Aston University bestowed an honorary doctorate in Science upon him and in November 2007 the Royal Northern College of Music also conferred an honorary degree upon him. HRH The Prince of Wales presented his Medal for Arts Philanthropy to Michael, and his wife Jean, in November 2011.
Michael was awarded the CBE in the January 2011 Honours List for his services to Industry and Charity.
From April 2007 to April 2008 he was High Sheriff of Greater Manchester.
From May 2009 to June 2014 he was Vice Lord Lieutenant of Greater Manchester. He retired in 2014 having serviced his full term of office