vmhosts

MEET THE TEAM

Michael Custance scaled

MICHAEL CUSTANCE

FOUNDER

Michael is the owner of VMhosts with over 20 years’ experience working in with IT Managed Services Companies. Michael originally gained his Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer qualification in 2000 and was one of the first 500 engineers in the world to earn the 2003 MCSE qualification. Michael is very much still technology focused and gets a real buzz from helping customers get the most from their investments in IT software and hardware, working directly with the support, presales and consultancy teams at VMhosts.

In his spare time Michaels 16,000 ltr marine fish tank keeps him busy (and relaxed!) and he enjoys spending time with family and friends.

Paul Hardy 1 scaled

PAUL HARDY

MANAGING DIRECTOR

Paul is the Managing Director of VMhosts with 30 years of experience working within IT reseller businesses ensuring high levels of customer satisfaction are achieved with Managed Services, Consultancy led engagements and project delivery. The successful supply of services has always contributed to healthy levels of growth. Paul has a strong technical bias as one of the first waves of VMware VCP’s in the world and held HPE MASE which means he’s very comfortable with most storage technologies.

On a personal note, Paul is a Crossfit addict and trains most days which he finds helps maintain the required energy levels to continually drive the business forward.

Gary Eastwood 1 scaled

GARY EASTWOOD

TECHNICAL SERVICES MANAGER

Gary is the Technical Services Manager with over 15 years’ experience working in Managed Service Provider companies. Gary started his career working as a 1st Line Support engineer and has worked his way through to now heading up both the Support and Professional Services teams at VMhosts.

In his spare time, Gary enjoys playing football and being outdoors whenever possible, whether that’s hiking or just pottering in the garden.

P1050537 2

NICK FOTHERGILL

SOLUTIONS ARCHITECT

Nick joined the team in September 2022 after 8 years at his last company running the technical services side of the business. He went from being the only one to a team of 50! During his career he has been involved in presales, consultancy, delivery, support and everything in between – and will continue to do so with VMhosts!

His technical skills lay in the Cloud, Microsoft stack, Security, Citrix and VMWare but he’s a bit of a generalist and loves to get involved with anything!

Outside of tech he’s an avid clay pigeon shooter and holds a private pilot’s license – although sold his plane during Covid so hasn’t flown for a while.

Claire Custance scaled

CLAIRE CUSTANCE

OPERATIONS AND MARKETING MANAGER

Claire is the Operations and Marketing Manager at VMhosts and has been with the company for over 2 years. Claire has over 12 years of experience working within the events industry due to her love of planning and organising. Claire has experience of all areas of event management from marketing the event, to managing the delivery team, to ensuring it’s delivered to the highest Health and Safety standards.

At VMhosts Claire manages our marketing strategy and all things Health and Safety and HR supporting the Managing Director.

Claire works part time and when not at work is looking after her 3-year-old son, seeing friends and family, or organising a trip away somewhere!

Richard Yates scaled

RICHARD YATES

TECHNICAL CONSULTANT

Richard joined VMhosts nearly 7 years ago as a Technical Consultant and has been working on numerous projects involving the core products of VMware, Veeam, Office 365, Windows Server etc. over this time. He has kept his skills up to date with a number of qualifications in Veeam, VMware and soon to be passed Microsoft Mobility and Security to help with Endpoint manager \ Azure AD projects.

Outside of work he likes to try fire up the smoker and smoke a brisket or ribs. Richard is also a keen cricketer that unfortunately doesn’t get to play much due to a tractor mad 4-year-old son, and a 2-year-old daughter who likes whatever her brother happens to be playing with at the time!

Sham scaled

SHAM SZELA

SYSTEMS ENGINEER

Sham is a systems engineers at VMhosts having started his career in IT in virtualisation nearly 4 years ago. Sham is very interested in current and emerging technologies and is continuously improving his qualifications to ensure he can offer our customers the expert advice and knowledge they need.

In his spare time, Sham loves airsoft and spends numerous weekends out with friends at different airsoft sites, and also gaming on his PC – he’s never far away from a computer!

Peter Barnett scaled

PETER BARNETT 

SUPPORT SPECIALIST

Peter is a support specialist for VMhosts and is your first point of call when logging any support issues with us. Peter joined the team nearly three years ago after completing an apprenticeship with us and continues to learn every day, supporting colleagues in a 1st and 2nd line support role. Peter enjoys the varied issues you get with supporting multiple customers and loves trouble shooting problems and getting them solved. 

In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his daughter, fishing, and cruising up and down the river in his canal boat. 

owne

OWEN BATCHELDER

APPRENTICE

Owen is an Apprentice here at VMhosts and will resolve a lot of the first line tickets and answer phone calls whilst shadowing the team when undertaking more advanced tasks. Owen is learning about new areas of technology all the time to help widen his skills and experience for the future.

In his spare time he enjoys learning about cars and spending time with family.

Paul scaled

PAUL JONES

INTERNAL ACCOUNT MANAGER

Paul is an Internal Account Manager at VMhosts and has been with the business for 3 years. His passion is customer service and loves helping our customers with all their IT needs and requirements.

Paul also enjoys liaising with our partners and suppliers to ensure our customers receive the best service and price possible.

In his spare time Paul is a keen footballer and enjoys spending time with family and friends.

Untitled design 6

FAY THOMSON

SENIOR ADMINISTRATOR

Fay is a Senior Administrator at VMhosts with over 30 years’ experience working as an Administrator primarily within the IT sector. Fay thrives on the challenges each working day brings. Fay joined VMhosts in February 2021 but has worked with several of her colleagues in a previous employment.

In her spare time, Fay enjoys travelling both in the UK and abroad, DIY (building decks, laying laminate floors and much more!), long walks or a gym workout, and spending time with family and friends.

dan

DANIEL CLARKSON 

TECHNICAL CONSULTANT

 

Daniel is a Technical Consultant here at VMhosts and has around 20 years experience working in IT, mainly as Internal IT support for various companies from small to large multinational companies. Daniel would consider himself to be an IT generalist, but his main skill set is around Microsoft technologies.   

In his spare time, Daniel likes to get out on his road bike and spend the day finding new places in the local area where he lives. If he’s not out on the bike Daniel can often be found down the stables, helping out his daughter with her horse. He also enjoys going for walks with his family and their two dogs Jack and Cooper.

katie 1

KATIE DRIVER

ADMINISTRATOR

Katie joined VMHosts in May 2023 as an Administrator, forming a dynamic duo with Fay. They have previously worked together, bringing a strong synergy to their roles.

Before joining VMHosts, Katie served as a Personal Assistant to the Head of the Junior section at a local Independent School. In her leisure time, she values spending quality moments with her family and friends, as well as indulging in the vibrant world of theatre.

Katie also finds pleasure in reading, exploring art exhibitions, and immersing herself in music. Though reluctantly, she contemplates rejoining the gym in the near future… maybe!

For administrative support and seamless collaboration, Katie is an invaluable asset to the VMHosts team.

neil 1

Neil Thomson

SALES MANGER

Neil is a driven and technically-capable Sales Manager with a successful background in Managed Services, B2B, professional services, technology, solutions, SME, commercial, NHS, Government and corporate sectors.

Neil joined VMhosts in 2023 to lead and develop the sales team and deliver growth to the business whilst meeting customer needs.

Outside of work Neil loves to keep fit and especially likes running with DIY and travel filling what spare time is left.

james

JAMES HARVEY

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANGER

James is a seasoned professional, bringing over 20 years of expertise to his role. With a remarkable track record, he has established himself as a trusted and knowledgeable leader. James initially honed his skills at Beovax Computer Services, where he immersed himself in delivering exceptional products and services. This led him to ascend to the position of Sales Director for the South East region.

In 2019, James joined VMhosts, where he continues to make significant contributions. Specialising in the areas of Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI), VMware, and networking, James possesses a comprehensive understanding of the latest technologies and trends.

Beyond his professional pursuits, James cherishes quality time with his children, appreciating the importance of family. He also finds joy in engaging in recreational activities with his friends, particularly indulging in a few rounds of air-soft battles.

calum

callum hardy

APPRENTICE

Callum started an apprenticeship with VMhosts in 2023. He primarily works on the service desk helping customers resolve any IT issues. Callum also enjoys his site visits including learning about the datacenters VMhosts utilise for the cloud platform, as well as customer visits and interacting face to face with people at the customers site.

Callum has always had an interest in IT and is enjoying his role whilst advancing his skills and experience.

Outside of work Callum have a keen interest in Dungeons & Dragons and playing other table-top games with friends. He is also a frequent reader having read a wide variety of books since he was young.

Ryan

Ryan Leybourne

ACCOUNT & SERVICE DELIVERY MANGER

Ryan has over 11 years of experience working within IT and Managed Service Providers. He started out as a 1st Line Engineer and progressed into Service Management roles. Ryan played a part setting up the technology used to distribute the first Covid vaccines administered in the UK.

Outside of work, Ryan is a keen sportsman and enjoys watching all sports England or Great Britain compete in. Cricket and Football are his main interests and Ryan has twice played as an overseas cricketer in Australia. Ryan also enjoy travelling and has recently purchased a campervan to explore parts of the UK and Europe. Maybe you will see him on his travels!

kyne

Kyne Barrett

TECHNICAL CONSULTANT

Kyne joined VMhosts team in October 2023 as a Technical Consultant. He handles a range of tasks, from addressing end-user requests and issues to delivering project work. Kyne’s technical skills are focused on the Microsoft stack of technologies, both on-premises and Azure cloud based however he is also highly skilled in VMware & Veeam and loves a challenge with new technology.

Outside of work, Kyne enjoys spending time with his girlfriend and travelling around the country. They enjoy everything from hiking up mountains to spending time by the coast. Kyne is also passionate about cooking and baking!

keagan

Keagan Da Costa

SALES EXECUTIVE

Keagan joined VMhosts as a Sales Executive in 2023. Having 5 years of sales experience working with both ‘business to business’ and ‘business to consumer’ he has grown a passion for delivering a fantastic service. In joining VMhosts, his focus is on finding new business to help grow and expand the portfolio and to extend brand awareness.

Away from work, he is an avid golfer and tries to play at least once a week at Haverhill Golf Club. Keagan also plays football with friends at the local indoor football grounds.

The rest of his time is spent working on his house and spending time with family and friends, and nothing beats doing that with a traditional South African Braai.