Head of Rural

John has worked in the rural property and commercial leisure sectors since 1979 when he left the Royal Agricultural College.     

He is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.     

John specialises in supporting landed estates having worked at Goodwood House, Knebworth House and most recently at Blenheim Palace where he served as their first Chief Executive from 2003 to the end of 2016 when he joined Bidwells as their new Head of Rural.

John has also spent time with The Tussaud’s Group (now Merlin) during his career working at Warwick Castle and in London as the General Manager for Madame Tussaud’s London and the London Planetarium.

In addition to the above, John is a Director of Experience Oxfordshire (the Destination Management Organisation for the County), a member of the VisitEngland Advisory Board and a member of the Tourism & Commercial Development Committee with the Historic Houses Association.

John is an unusual combination of farmer’s son, land agent and commercial leisure manager and he has led transformational change in every role throughout his career.

John specialises in supporting an entrepreneurial approach to estate management as well as driving the leisure and tourism economy – to include day visitors, events, concerts and rural diversification.



Wide knowledge of Rural Estate Management, Heritage, Leisure & Tourism and RDD



Introducing John Hoy


We operate a 348-acre site in Oxfordshire which has grown its visitor activities organically since acquisition in 2013. John has been instrumental in assisting us develop a clear business plan for the visitor offering, accelerate growth and advice on negotiating key venue-user strategies and agreements. John’s hands-on experience at the sharp end of a number of the country’s leading visitor attractions has been crucial value-add to our business, and lent a gravitas and knowledge that has supported our ambitions

Daniel Geoghegan, Managing Director
Bicester Heritage Ltd


John Hoy is providing Stonor with exceptional support as we take the business to the next stage and develop our long term strategy.  John’s experience and knowledge of estate management and diversification is second to none. In a very short space of time John has provided invaluable assistance strengthening our events programme using his extensive contacts to bring in new events.  We have also embarked upon a five year planning exercise with John’s support which is already helping ensure we make the right long term business decisions for Stonor.  In each area we have worked with John it is extraordinary to see how knowledgeable he is on everything from architects to music impresarios, local government to parkland managers, building projects to marketing.  It is fantastic for my wife and I to have him as part of our wider team.

The Hon William Stonor
Stonor Park

Related content

Power of tourism sector revealed at Bidwells rural seminar

Tourism generates more revenue and provides more employment for the rural sector than farming, John Hoy, Head of Rural at Bidwells, revealed at a special rural seminar last week.
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