improving property searches

IPSA announces new leadership structure to navigate changing landscape of property search industry

IPSA have stated that it has been a busy few weeks following the news that after seven very successful years at the helm, Chairman Andrew Prismall would be stepping down to concentrate on other activities.  

In Andrew’s statement to members, he explained:

“It has been a privilege to lead this army of independent, enthusiastic and determined smaller search firms as we continue to have a presence in a search market dominated by high-tech, high-investment, multinational firms taking a large portion of our business. Not only that but to try and make those voices heard in a period of such huge change to the market itself, with the HMLR project and many groups setting up to radically change how property information is included within the conveyancing process.”

… one of the greatest changes over the last seven years is the evolving of a new Executive Board, which means that I can leave it in very safe hands indeed.”

Following meetings of the Executive Board, a General Meeting was arranged for Friday 15th March.  Members agreed to the Board’s proposals to amend the Constitution to allow for the introduction of a Chief Executive role to serve on the Board alongside a new Chairman.

Hamish McLay of Search & Convey was nominated as the new Chairman and was elected unopposed.  Hamish has been a stalwart supporter of IPSA for many years and has been an integral member of the Executive Board since November 2020.  His experience is wide and varied and he is well known within the industry.  Of his election to the position of Chairman Hamish said:

“I felt very humbled when invited to take on the mantle of Chairman.  Following on from such strong predecessors, I look forward to carrying on the momentum.  Andrew Prismall, alongside Heather Poole-Gleed, has taken IPSA to such new heights.  Having such a strong board and solid base my aim is to demonstrate to an ever-widening audience the invaluable support our independent researchers can give to conveyancers.

Through in-house activity and the IT enhancements achieved, IPSA Searches now has a much wider brief; the services available go way beyond that of just conveyancers.  With so many conflicting messages finding their way into Property Matters at present, I look forward to helping and reassuring more people and businesses through what IPSA Searches can do for them.  Exciting times ahead.”

Following the election of Hamish as Chairman, Heather Poole-Gleed of Shropshire Property Search was nominated for the position of Chief Executive and was duly appointed.  Heather first joined the Executive Board in 2016 and has held the positions of Company Secretary, Treasurer and Director of Membership Services since 2017.  In the interests of continuity, Heather has agreed to continue in those roles alongside the Chief Executive role in the short term:

“It has been an honour to serve on the IPSA Executive Board for the past eight years and the icing on the cake is being appointed Chief Executive.  I relish the ongoing challenge of moving IPSA forward with honesty and integrity, working alongside Hamish for the benefit of all of our members.  Meanwhile, I will be continuing to work alongside members, advising on access issues and assisting with enquiries.”

Hamish and Heather are joined on the IPSA Executive Board by Michelle Poller of Property Search North East, Fiona Riley of North Yorkshire Legal Services, Ryan Hobson of Elan Technology Group, and Mahesh Kerai of Kerai Property Searches. With well over 100 years of experience serving the property search industry between them, the new IPSA Board is more than ready to take on the challenges facing its members on a daily basis.

For more information about IPSA visit, or to find an independent search firm go to

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