We recognise that a company’s real strengths lie in the people that it employs. At Charnwood Molecular, our scientists bring a wealth of creative experience to the team – the majority of our research personnel have extensive postdoctoral experience, including as research scientists within major pharmaceutical companies.

Our strategy is to employ the most talented chemists and to regularly invest in the latest technology and equipment in order to provide the highest quality and service for outsourced research and synthesis.

Charnwood Molecular has a highly experienced leadership team:

Dr Mike McKenzie

Head of Operations

Mike joined Charnwood Molecular at its inception in 1998 as a Research Chemist, becoming Head of Chemistry in August 1999 and Head of Operations in June 2011.

Mike holds a PhD in synthetic organic chemistry, and prior to joining Charnwood Molecular,he carried out postdoctoral research at Liverpool University in the field of enzymatic/whole cell asymmetric transformations, and in the area of bone disease therapeutics.

Mike’s understanding of our customer base, his attention to detail and his commitment to the highest quality of customer service has been pivotal in the development of Charnwood Molecular as a leading contract research organisation since its inception in 1998.

Dr James Hitchin

Head of Medicinal Chemistry

James joined Charnwood Molecular in December 2016 as Head of Medicinal Chemistry.

James brings extensive experience from across multiple therapeutic areas in drug discovery, having previously held senior positions at SAFC Pharma, Pfizer Pharmaceuticals and KemFine Oy.

Prior to joining Charnwood, James was Senior Medicinal Chemist at the Cancer Research UK Manchester Institute, where he worked on various target classes, including kinases and epigenetic targets. James has led numerous projects from hit identification right through to lead optimization and beyond, and has an in depth knowledge of modern drug discovery, as exemplified by his impressive publication record.

Dr Robin Wilkes

Director of Business Development

Robin joined Charnwood Molecular in December 2014 as Director of Business Development.

With over 22 years’ experience in the sector, Robin has held a variety of roles covering technical and commercial aspects, with both discovery and development emphasis.

Robin’s technical achievements include contributing to IND candidates whilst in oncology drug discovery with OSI Pharmaceuticals, and achieving milestones for advancement of drug candidates to clinical trials across a range of therapeutic areas whilst within contract research environments for companies including Evotec and Sygnature Discovery.

An inventor on 6 patents and author of 25 publications to date, Robin is a results focused individual. His role is to advance Charnwood Molecular’s business interests globally.

Professor Philip Page


Phil is a majority shareholder of Charnwood Molecular and is a founding Director.

Phil graduated from Imperial College and completed doctoral studies with Professor Steve Ley before undertaking postdoctoral work with Professor Leo Paquette at Ohio State University.

Phil is a well-known figure in the academic arena, and has held academic appointments at the University of Liverpool (Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Reader), Loughborough University (Professor of Organic Chemistry, Dean of Research) and the University of East Anglia, where he is currently Professor of Organic Chemistry. He is author of over 200 academic publications.

Phil has an international reputation and proven research expertise in synthetic methodology, asymmetric synthesis/catalysis and natural product chemistry.

Professor Steven Allin

Managing Director and Joint-CEO

Steve is a majority shareholder of Charnwood Molecular and is a founding Director.

Steve graduated from the University of Liverpool with a degree in Chemistry and Pharmacology, and obtained his Ph.D. from Liverpool in the area of asymmetric synthesis. Steve gained postdoctoral experience with Professor Alan R. Katritzky at the Centre for Heterocyclic Compounds, University of Florida.

Steve was Lecturer, Senior Lecturer and Reader in Organic Chemistry at Loughborough University from 1997 until 2008. He was Professor of Organic Chemistry at Keele University from 2008-2012, Head of the Department of Chemistry and Forensics at Nottingham Trent University from 2012-2015, Head of the NTU Doctoral School and a member of the University Leadership Team from 2015-2017.  In February 2017 Steve moved to Charnwood Molecular to become the Managing Director, providing day-to-day leadership and management during a significant planned growth phase for the company. He retains a research position (part-time) at NTU.

Steve has a proven research track record in heterocyclic chemistry, natural product synthesis and asymmetric synthesis.