D.O.B: 01 January 1952 (Born in India )
Marital Status: Harmesh Kaur (Wife)
Two Sons: Iqbal Singh Sekhon LLB (Solicitor)
Narinder Singh Sekhon (Barrister)
Qualification: Under Metric Qualification from Jullander High School, Bhougpur, India.
Languages: English, Punjabi, Hindi and Urdu
Index of Activities - Member/Director/Chair of Organisation- Education
I arrived in England from India in 1967
Other Business Activities
Although I have been nominated office bearer in many organisations, I would like to list the more significant ones;
1987 - 1994
My position was the Vice-Chairman and Founder of the Institute of Asian Business. This institute has been one of the most successful organisations, and during my Vice-Chairmanship I have travelled widely on business activities, received many Ministers, Members of the Royal Family, the Indian Prime Minister, the High Commissioner, etc. I have also received a senior delegate of the Punjab Haryana Delhi Chamber of Commerce, and several large businesses such as the CBI of Commerce.
1994 - To date
Board Member of Bradford Asian Business Association Ltd. In this position I play an important role in the development of this organisation and I have been given the responsibility to publicise and represent the organisation as a specialist in textiles.
President of the Sikh Parent Association and Trustee of Shri Guru Govind Singh Sikh Temple. During this period as a Trustee I have been invited to many functions where the former Prime Minister Mrs Thatcher (now late Lady Thatcher) and Foreign Secretary were chief guests.TOP
Police / Community
Since 1971 I have been a member of many police community panels, and have promoted liaison between the Sikh community and the police. I have been invited to meet with Chief Constable and Senior Police Officers to give advice on Sikh community affairs. I am a member of the Police and Community Abuse Panel, where I play an important role to appraise the police regarding the needs of battered women and absconded girls.
I raised sufficient monies of £1500 for extra surveillance cameras for the area, which was beneficial to reduce crime for the whole community during times of high crime.
During the well known 1995 Manningham riots and in the subsequent riots on Legrams Lane I liaised between the police and the community to help settle the disputes. In the more recent riots I was invited to discuss the issues concerning the riots by HRH Prince Charles.
I have enjoyed good relations, and assisted wherever and whenever, every Chief Constable for the last 15 years with the Yorkshire Sikh Forum.
Community and Charity Contributions
I come from an extended family and since my school days I have volunteered with my school companions to work during this period of famine, floods and tropical disease. I had great enthusiasm in assisting the elderly and disabled, and thus nurtured my interest and vocation in care and the community.
Since arriving in this country I have participated in promoting my community. On the record of my services I have been President of the Yorkshire Sikh Forum for many years, which holds over a 1500 membership of a strong Sikh community. I have provided for all the important functions and have created such a climate where people of all faiths respect each other. The Bishop of Bradford invited me to become a member of the Interfaith Group.
I have, along with friends, raised over one million pounds for the Bradford Royal Infirmary Scanner Appeal. As the President of the Yorkshire Sikh Forum, I was invited to a meeting by the Home Secretary to make him aware of the needs of the Sikh community. This organisation has now been recognised nationally and will be inaugurated by the Government Minister Baroness Ann Widdecombe. My involvement has been very highly appreciated. I have been very successful in negotiating on behalf of the parents whose girls and boys had run away from home.
I work continuously with CHAS Housing Aid and assist in the provision of furniture. We raise money all the time for homeless people and we have raised over £100,000. The Soup Run is a similar organisation; we raised the money from the Sikh community to buy a Range Rover, as they did not have a vehicle to deliver soup to the homeless.
On numerous occasions I have been asked to advise the Home Office on immigration affairs, I was invited to visit the immigrations systems at Heathrow Airport by Geoff Lawler MP, Bradford and Tim Eggar. I was also invited by the Home Office Minister to visit the detention centre at Heathrow Airport with two other colleagues from different communities. The purpose of this visit was for me to establish, and report, as to whether the facilities provided for the immigrants were satisfactory. I have recently established good communication links with Mr Robert Lund (Chief Executive) of Leeds Bradford Airport, where we discussed the facilitation of their expansion programme where I encouraged LBA to include direct flights to Amristar in India (home of the Golden Temple), and also Lahore, Pakistan. This programme would (if implemented) encourage more usage of the local airport facilities and make a positive contribution to the local district economy of Leeds and Bradford.
As the owner of the premises previously known as the Marlboro Cinema, Bradford, I have refurbished this building and it was initially used as a Community Function Hall. This building provided premises for the use of weddings and celebrations within the Asian community. This hall was hired at a moderate price for these celebrations and events to the local community. Any requests for use by a charity, the Lord Mayors Charity or CHAS no rental fee was charged. Recently the Marlboro has been transformed into a Bazaar and is currently called the Marlboro Bazaar. There are a number of stalls which welcome new businesses to start up with very low rents to encourage them to become more successful.
On two occasions I have been to the Bradford College, by invitation of the Vice Chancellor Mr Colin Mellors. Shipley College was in need of funds for the training of young people and could not provide the necessary funding. I am pleased that I was able to contribute some £600 towards this. I was fortunate to meet with Princess Anne on two occasions at Shipley College. Contributions and assistance has also been given to Lilycroft, Drummond Road, Nab Wood and many other schools in the local area.
I have encouraged in good faith, many new businesses in Bradford by introducing them to bank, legal and accounting services free of charge to help them succeed. My support here was recognised by way of an award to Euroasian by the HSBC and Lloyds TSB bank managers for help to young people in Bradford, and also an award from the Bradford Business Forum. This has also helped to create new jobs.
As Patron of Bradford Business Association and Patron of Peacemaker of Bradford, many issues have been covered and resolved and I have always tried to give support and work to those who find it difficult to get back into normal social and working life.
I have also met with the Duke of York twice and with Prince Charles on some five separate occasions. On the sad event of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales and mother of William and Harry, I organised, with my colleagues, prayer meetings which included all faiths and a 'bringing together' of many religions and communities. There were two thousand people from all different religions. Also upon the sad loss of our beloved Queen Mother we again organised prayers at the Sikh Temple.
I personally donated £2500 to Lifeforce in Bradford, which helped to assist people with no wages. This unfortunately was lost and Lifeforce was closed in 2002. At this time Mr. David Smith was Bishop of Bradford and he was sad that my contribution had been lost.
By invitation of the Indian High Commission I have had the great honour to meet with Prime Ministers of India: Indra Ghandi; Inder Pal Gujral and deputy Prime minister Shri Lal Krishna Advani, and many more Ministers to encourage them to more business in the UK.
I have worked alongside the Bishop of Bradford Mr. David Smith to restore peace and harmony when Bradford suffered its riots and community disputes, and when the Sikh Community had disputes with the Sikh Temple in Bradford my efforts were invaluable in restoring goodwill for which I was given the honour of becoming Chairman to maintain good relations and solve the dispute in the Sikh Temple.
Since 1971, I have been very active in charity work and during this period have raised several thousand pounds for many various causes such as cancer research, medical requirements, and also for the Bradford festival, earthquakes, floods, disabled and handicapped people. I have had a large involvement in raising funds for the various Lord Mayors Appeals; raising the sum of £86,000 during the time of Ghajanar Khadiq, over £100,000 with previous Lord Mayors Appeals, and most recently with Councillor Valerie Binney. This help is ongoing and I will continue to show support.
Through my contacts with many Ministers in India I have been in a position to raise money when needed for disaster funds and for the needy, I have also donated large amounts or money myself.
I give help and assistance whenever possible to disabled persons and regularly donate £50-£100 to various charity organisations. I have in the last 20 years worked with and made many donations to the Lord Mayors Appeal and many other charitable organisations and appeals.
Funds for Eye Camp donations (both personal and organised) have been raised and also blankets and monies for Bosnia, Afghanistan and other troubled areas.
Monies have been raised for the homeless and I have personally organised Social Events and raised over £2,500 at three different functions with raffles, auctions etc.
In 1984 many people died in India through various disputes. Through my involvement within the Sikh Community, help and support was given to the widows and orphans.TOP
I have had the honour and pleasure of being invited to dinner with lady Thatcher, and on a number of occasions have been invited to community functions to meet with Mr. John Major, Mr, Kenneth Baker, Mrs Gillian Shepherd, Sir Norman Fowler, Dame Angela Rambold, Douglas Hurd, Mr. Peter Lloyd and Mr. Kenneth Clarke, William Hague, Duncan Smith, Micheal Foot on three occasions, and Mrs. Shirley Williams.
I have also had the honour to be invited by Prime Minister Tony Blair on 14th December 2004 to 10 Downing Street for breakfast; this was to discuss opening academies throughout the country.
I have had the great honour to be a dinner guest at Buckingham Palace at a garden party in 1998. I have been invited on two occasions by HRH Price Charles to visit Kensington Palace and I have also met HRH the Princess Royal at a function of the governing body of Shipley College.
The High Sheriff gave me the pleasure of being the first invited guest of the Sikh community; I have since been invited to more functions and events.
In March of 1999 I had the great honour to be awarded the MBE in recognition of my many and varied involvements within the community and numerous charities. The Sikh, Muslim, Hindu, in fact people of all faiths, organisations, friends and colleagues alike were all very pleased that I was given this award. I received hundreds of congratulations. I have had the good fortune to be invited to numerous celebrations of my award, amongst them two receptions that were held by the Hindu Culture Society.
The Federations of Hindu Temple (Bradford) invited me to a number of celebrations; celebrations by four different groups of the Muslim Communities, and three celebrations within the Sikh Community. I met with the Lord Mayor of Bradford and the Indian High Commissioner, where I received a commemorative plaque.
In July 2003 I was awarded a life time achievement award for which I was most honoured and I also received an Asian Trade Link Award.
In July 2005 I am now proud to have been appointed as ambassador for the Yorkshire Society, bringing all the communities together.
April 2006 I joined the Leeds/Bradford friendship group.
February 2007 in Manchester I was honoured with the presentation of a lifetime achievement award for Asian Youth.
In April 2007 I headed a delegation of prominent people including Heads of Police, College staff, University staff ant the Lord Mayor of Bradford. The delegation was to visit India and Pakistan; we met with Prime Minister Shokat Aziz and President General Parvez Musharef and many other Ministers. We visited the Chamber of Commerce, University of Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore and Rawalbindi, we also met with Chiefs of Police. We hope that this delegation would achieve good education, import/export relationships, and general good will and understanding between our countries.
From 2007 to present I have been Chairman for the Yorkshire Sikh Forum.
In May 2007 I was appointed Vice-Chairman of the Lord Mayors Charity for disabled people.
I continue to show my devoted support to many organisations, charities, businesses and people in need. Nothing pleases me more than to witness, and be a part of the achievements and positive growth from local, national and international communities.
Nirmal Singh is a self made property entrepreneur having started his business in 1972 with his wife Harmesh Kaur.
The business was established by the chairman of the Sekhon Group of companies, Nirmal is also the managing director of Nirmal Razai Mart & Co Ltd.
As explained, he is a an entrepreneur having received many business awards over his forty-year business career. He has been recognised by our Queen Elizabeth II for his services to the community.
His benevolent nature crosses all sectors of charitable work irrespective of colour creed or religion.
It is his belief that he should put back into the community as many have assisted him during his growth in the property and business sectors.
He has achieved much respect in the Yorkshire district having political connections including ministerial and government links which was the basis when he became the chairman of the Yorkshire Sikh Forum representing the Indian community.
He is often asked to represent the Indian community on a national basis and enjoys creating international links between India and the UK.
He has achieved success in textiles having formally one of the best known Asian duvet manufacturing businesses in the UK since 1973, property investment and become a well respected community leader being the chairman of the Sikhs in Yorkshire known as the Yorkshire Sikh Forum and having been recognised by the Queen with an honour MBE for services to the community.
Essentially the Property Portfolio has been started originally as a long term investment programme with assistance from Nirmal's original business which involved bedding textiles in Bradford.
Essentially from his income of the incorporated textile business, he acquired property personally to rent to third parties to build equity.
Nirmal started this personally with his wife Harmesh Kaur trading as West End Business Centre and built up a portfolio as described by the schedule already provided. This currently banks with Lloyds for over 20 years.
The company specialising in bedding textiles known as Nirmal Razai Mart and Co Ltd also made good profits and it was decided to diversify its interests and long term goals into property. The accounts have been supplied. The trading bedding side of the business ceased in 2006 when the trading part of the business was sold to a competitor who wished to expand. Essentially the primary purpose of the company changed to property investment. It was decided that this timely diversification was more suitable to Nirmal and his family as the whole interests of the family were heading this way and gave Nirmal and his eldest son now 40 years of age an easier opportunity of working together which they have achieved gradually over almost 20 years.
One of Nirmal's skills and assets is to accept change to fit the environment when it is required and do what is required for the benefit of the business in an honest honourable and proactive manner. He prides himself on his hard earned and carefully built reputation established across all communities in the district. A copy of his C.V is enclosed.
The two vehicles that control the property portfolios which Nirmal Singh is involved in are Nirmal Razai Mart& Co Ltd and Nirmal Singh & Harmesh Kaur t/a Westend Business Centre, a partnership.
In or around 1995, Nirmal Singh persuaded his two sons Iqbal Sekhon ( Also known as Simmy) and Narinder Sekhon now formally a property solicitor and a barrister to also start a property business which has also grown considerably in size with over 300 residential and commercial tenants. This was instigated and overseen by Mr Nirmal Singh who has over the years amassed a wealth of experience and contacts.
It is true to say that the whole family work together and have a centralised administration base operated from Commercial House which also benefit from Simmy's legal knowledge as a property solicitor when preparing leases and agreements. All the rents are checked in and management issues considered by the team at this office of 3 persons under the direction of Nirmal and his two sons.
The arrangement runs smoothly as the separate businesses in separate entities with separate accounts have the support resource and shared business experience that they need to run smoothly and makes the business run effortlessly (within reason) through the management systems which allow for all sustainable and modest lifestyles.
The whole business whilst actively managed by Nirmal's eldest son Simmy is guided with the benefit of the wisdom and experience collected by Nirmal over the last 40 years.
This has allowed the family to enjoy a smooth transition between the two generations and it is intended that both sons will acquire through succession planning Nirmal's portfolios over the next 3 to 10 years depending on finance.
In particular with reference to 16/ 20 St John's North, it is intended to convert these to 16 residential apartments and rent these to third parties. The process will take approximately 9 months including upgrading the existing planning permission. The properties already benefit from residential planning permissions.
The family already know the area well as Simmy Sekhon acquired a similar property in the uniform terrace of 3 storey Georgian Town Houses at 24 St John's North approximately 18 months ago where his family live directly outside the prestigious Queen Elizabeth Grammar School. It is thought that the value of 16/ 20 St John's North will be £231.00 per sq ft when completed i.e. approx £ 2.31m. This is a huge uplift.
It is intended to rent these apartments and repay capital and interest on the loan.
I am a highly an ambitious individual having a successful career in Law specialising in commercial property. I have operated an established law firm from foundation level specialising in Commercial Property, Residential Property, Personal Injury, Commercial Litigation and Immigration, employing a team of 140 at the height of the property market. This involved setting up two branch offices (excluding the head office) in Huddersfield and Shipley and three law firms two of which operated in Bradford and one in Mansfield.
Quite separately I have also been involved in building a successful property business with my family over the past 10 years (640 tenants) and have held directorships and shareholdings in various holding companies.
I was awarded Entrepreneur of the year in 2005, a National Award in London at Café Royal.
I am married (15 years) to Mrs Jaz Sekhon (Pharmacist) and have 3 children Miss Sienna (8), Miss Kareena (4) and Karam (1).TOP
Effective Communication has always been important in all forms and having the ability to select the correct media. Personal one to one communication has been a particular strength; often more can be achieved in difficult circumstances.
Experience Recruitment Programme selecting a dedicated team to work in the business always ensuring that the image of the business is being enhanced.
Experience Recruitment Programme having particular regard to regulatory compliance.
Networking, Marketing & Sales to ensure that there is a sufficient level of work being generated to guarantee business well being. In particular there is a high a skill factor in sales and an excellent technique of persuasion to entice the target third party, based on true facts.
Customer Service Awareness, understanding client profiles and ensuring that their needs are met.
Analysis of accounts to understand management information to track the programme of the business, and to use the information to understand the business needs and deficiencies. There is a thorough understanding to use this tool to improve the business in a constructive manner.
Business Awareness to understand the market that we operate in and assess the strengths and weakness of competitors and adapt accordingly.
Implementing change has always been the most difficult task but to have the realisation and understanding of this has been the most difficult achievement of all.
My recent work between 2010 and 2013 involves the following:-
I.T Skills:Microsoft Word
Language Proficiency:English (GCSE x2)
Available unlimited on request
Iqbal is the in-house solicitor for the Sekhon Group of Companies and senior partner of Sekhon Firth Solicitors LLP (2002-2010) which employed over 140 staff with associated practices in which he was equity partner.
He is the key driver of the acquisition and finance side of the Group having been awarded a prestigious award in 2005 as a young entrepreneur by the International Association of Book Keepers.
Iqbal has assisted over 100 small to medium size businesses during their incubation stages offering quality office accommodation at competitive prices.
Narinder Singh Sekhon is a practising barrister holding an Equity Tenancy at Sovereign Chambers in Leeds.
His involvement with the Group has been similar to that of Iqbal but with the additional expertise of developing strategy and pursuing the student development sides of the business which are now forming "jewels in the crown"
The group has amassed over 350 student residential tenants and have planned a further 112 in the Palace Studios Huddersfield and 169 in Imperial studios Bradford.
It is fair to say that his careful planning and strategic development is assisted by his legal training as a Barrister and provides the diligent approach, which is vital to the continued growth of any organisation. This offers the required stability that the group needs.
Please contact The Nirmal Sekhon Group
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