Signature Staff

About Us

Signature Staff has been successfully placing elite staff with private households and corporations in the UK and Overseas for over 60 years.

The Signature Staff team will cater for your household’s requirements to source a nanny, norland nanny, private chef, personal assistant, maternity nurse or house manager and also your corporation’s requirements to source corporate waiting staff, corporate chefs and corporate butlers.

In January 2022, Signature Staff merged with Blues Agency, a leader in both corporate hospitality recruitment and private household hospitality recruitment.

Meet the Team

Tonya Illing

Head Recruitment Consultant – Private Households

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Tonya Illing

Head Recruitment Consultant – Private Households

Tonya leads the team dedicated to all nanny, maternity nurse and other household staff placements (excluding chefs).

After leaving her family’s farm in South Africa at eighteen, Tonya spent seven years as an international nanny before joining our ranks as a receptionist in 2002.

She soon made herself indispensable and is now one of the best-known names in the industry, as well as the cog that keeps the office turning. Tonya is a foodie, loves going on curious tours around the city and her specialist subject is London Public Transport.

tonya@signaturestaff.com

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Iona James

Head Recruitment Consultant – Corporate Hospitality & Private Households

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Iona James

Head Recruitment Consultant – Corporate Hospitality & Private Households

Iona leads the hospitality team alongside Ellie Fletcher, running temporary and permanent placements for corporate and private clients in addition to managing the business development.

After leaving school, Iona completed an extensive cookery course which she put to good use working for a multitude of corporate London catering companies and private clients in the UK and abroad. This ignited her passion for the hospitality industry and made her particularly well-placed to work with high-net-worth clients filling an assortment of chef and front of house roles.

Iona lived abroad for 12 years of her life and particularly enjoys travelling, experiencing the world’s best cuisines as well as spending her free time participating in team sports.

iona@signaturestaff.com

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Ellie Fletcher

Head Recruitment Consultant – Corporate Hospitality & Private Households

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Ellie Fletcher

Head Recruitment Consultant – Corporate Hospitality & Private Households

Ellie leads the hospitality team alongside Iona James, placing temporary and permanent hospitality staff within private households and corporate clients.

Ellie has worked in hospitality recruitment both in London and Sydney for over 9 years. She uses her strong interpersonal skills in building relationships both within the office as well as in providing a premium service for our candidate and client base.  

Ellie has a true passion for food and wine, and you will regularly find her exploring the vibrant restaurant scene that London offers

ellie@signaturestaff.com

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James Pawle

Chairman

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James Pawle

Chairman

As Chairman, James oversees the strategic direction of the business.

James has a background in finance where he has more than 10 years experience investing in and providing operational oversight to companies across a diverse range of sectors including recruitment, luxury retail, professional services, school uniform, automotive, building materials, and film distribution.

James enjoys exploring new countries, and is a huge fan of great food and wine.

james@signaturestaff.com

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Cathy Synan

Head of Accounts – Corporate Hospitality

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Cathy Synan

Head of Accounts – Corporate Hospitality

Cathy joined the leading hospitality recruitment agency, Blues Agency,  in 1989 after a career in Australia, working for Myer as an Accounts and Payroll Administrator. 

After joining Blues Agency, she completed a three-month cookery course at Leiths. Cathy has developed a wonderful working relationship with all our clients and candidates. She is responsible for the weekly payroll, accounts and invoicing.

Cathy loves to travel in Europe and Australia.

cathy@signaturestaff.com

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Emily Lyle

Junior Recruitment Consultant – Corporate Hospitality & Private Households

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Emily Lyle

Junior Recruitment Consultant – Corporate Hospitality & Private Households

Emily is responsible for managing all corporate temporary bookings and liaises with clients and candidates on a daily basis.

Her enthusiasm for the hospitality industry began when she completed the Leith’s School of Food and Wine. This led to her working in a high-end lodge in the Kruger National Park for 4 months, splitting her time between working in a busy kitchen and front of house.

When not in the office Emily enjoys playing team sports, walking and discovering local gin distilleries.

emily@signaturestaff.com

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Helly Bell

Junior Recruitment Consultant – Private Households

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Helly Bell

Junior Recruitment Consultant – Private Households

Helly is a junior recruitment consultant specialising in placing governesses, nannies and personal assistants with clients in the UK and Overseas.

Upon her graduation from Leeds University, Helly moved to London to begin a career in Banking. However, she subsequently decided to move into the premium household staffing market and has not looked back. Her experience gained whilst working as a nanny in her formative years makes her an invaluable asset to both candidates and clients.

In her spare time, you can often find Helly attending exercise classes or volunteering for the National Autistic Society.

helly@signaturestaff.com

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Farah Teja

Head of Administration – Private Households

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Farah Teja

Head of Administration – Private Households

Farah joined Signature Staff as a receptionist in 2021 and has since transitioned to Head of Administration, a role in which she provides administrative support to the recruitment consultants and manages the administration team.  

Farah studied at Kingston University, gaining a degree in Nutrition. With previous experience in administration and customer care, she is able to work efficiently and also build a strong rapport with both candidates and clients.

Farah enjoys dancing, attending various exercise classes, visiting new places and spending time with friends and family.

farah@signaturestaff.com

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Ellie O’Meara

Recruitment Administrator – Private Households

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Ellie O’Meara

Recruitment Administrator – Private Households

Ellie joined the team as a recruitment administrator in 2021 after leaving university having completed her degree in English Language and Linguistics.

She has a background in customer service which has given her an eye for detail and strives to help candidates have the most positive experience as possible.

Ellie grew up on the Sussex coast and enjoys a good dog walk, as well as live music and travelling.

ellieo@signaturestaff.com

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Charlotte Comyns

Recruitment Administrator – Corporate Hospitality & Private Households

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Charlotte Comyns

Recruitment Administrator – Corporate Hospitality & Private Households

Charlie is responsible for liaising with hospitality candidates and organising weekly bookings with corporate clients.

Charlie grew up in Norfolk and enjoyed working as a private nanny and working in local gastropubs throughout school and university holidays.

She joined the team in 2021 after leaving university where she studied French and Spanish. Charlie enjoys music, fitness and socialising.

charlotte@signaturestaff.com

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Emma Tomlinson

Recruitment Resourcer

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Emma Tomlinson

Recruitment Resourcer

Emma is responsible for resourcing new candidates across the Private Household and Corporate Hospitality divisions of the business.

Emma has strong experience working in both the hospitality and private household fields, having worked as a nanny, waitress and undertaken private chef roles. Emma grew up in Yorkshire before making the move to London (post university) in October 2021 to pursue a career in recruitment. 

Outside of work, Emma enjoys playing tennis and has a passion for eating Italian food.

emma@signaturestaff.com

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Enquire

Please do get in touch with one of our Signature Staff team members to discuss your requirements. 

Work with Signature Staff

If you’re interested in working with us, send us an email at admin@signaturestaff.com, and don’t forget to send us your CV.

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