Welch Group MD Jim Welch has been appointed chairman of Palletline following the retirement of Trevor Ellis, who has been in the role for 11 years and will remain on the Palletline board.

Welch, who became financial director at the pallet network after the firm joined in 2010, said: “I wasn’t desperate to be chairman but Palletline is special because it is member owned and that sort of organisation only works if we all step up to do our bit every now and again. I thought it was my turn.”

He added: “My role in the business will be to encourage our network members to continue to strive towards our common goals.

“Palletline’s strategy is well established and the importance to most of our members is that it remains an efficient and cost effective way of getting our customers’ small pallet consignments delivered and that will remain core.”

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Palletline MD Graham Leitch said: “Rarely do businesses have such a plethora of highly successful business heads in their midst to choose from. Therefore both personally and on behalf of Palletline I welcome Jim Welch into the position.”

In response to calls for consolidation in the pallet network sector, which Palletforce CEO Michael Conroy raised earlier in the year, Welch said:

“We’re unlikely to sell and we’re unlikely to buy.

“You could argue there are enough networks about at the moment and if one wants to buy another, good luck to them. It will be a bold move and it will take several years to integrate two networks, but Palletline is unlikely to be involved.”