The new breed of UKCS O&G development and production business.

About Speedwell Energy

We are a small,dynamic team with a strong blend of operator and service companies experience with a clear vision to become the first choice field development partner, focused on delivery and aligned with the recommendations of the Wood report and the UK MER strategy.

Our heritage comes from the Scottish fishing industry and keeping that link to now exploring the sea for hydrocarbons.

Speedwell has a core set of values. They're not complicated, but that's the way we like to do business; simple and focused on delivery. Our stakeholders are our extended family and we treat everyone in the Speedwell family the same way, with; Honesty, Fairness, Professionalism, and Integrity. And fun!


Image of the Sea with an incredible sunset by Jeff Riley

The Team

Richard T. Strachan

Richard T. Strachan

Richard is CEO and founder of Speedwell Energy a development and production company focused on the UKCS. An oil and gas professional with over 30 years experience having worked for both oil & gas companies and contracting organisations at a senior level within the UKCS. His experience covers all aspects of developing, operating and maintaining oil and gas facilities from onshore gas terminals through to subsea, fixed and floating facilities. Richard held Director and Managing Director roles in engineering design, construction and field development companies and has a flair for developing and offering novel commercial business propositions to stimulate business growth and increase company profitability. He is a driven individual with the highest level of HSE leadership, business ethics and professionalism


Richard is a Chartered Engineer and European Chartered Engineer. He has a B.Sc. Honours awarded from Robert Gordons Institute of Technology an MS.c awarded from Aberdeen University and is a fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers.


Jim Ritchie

Jim Ritchie

Jim is the Speedwell Energy Subsurface Director and has worked in the petroleum industry for over 40 years, mostly working as the operator. He has a full appreciation and understanding of the complete cycle of exploration and petroleum field development with a good knowledge of integrated projects, uncertainty, risk and oilfield economics. Jim has a track record in project management & leading multi-disciplinary teams delivering hydrocarbon discoveries and successful field developments, contributing leadership, innovation and added value. He has worked on a wide range of basins, play types and assets and is experienced in new ventures, joint ventures and asset portfolio management including licence applications & relinquishments.

Jim is a Chartered Scientist, Chartered Geologist and European Chartered Geologist. He has a B.Sc. Honours degree awarded by Aberdeen University and is the co-author of several technical papers.


Ian McIlwaine

Ian McIlwaine

Ian is Drilling & Operations Director as well as Speedwell’s HSE Manager. He has over 35 years of petroleum industry experience, the vast majority of which has been gained working with major oil companies. Over 30 years of this experience has been spent performing cradle to grave well engineering & operations projects in a variety of roles both in the UK North Sea as well as in numerous first and third world international locations. His experience covers both land (including heli-rig operations) and offshore (platform, jackup, semisubmersible, drill ship and tender assist) operations. Ian has a proven track record in project management & leading multi-disciplinary teams to deliver successful exploration, appraisal and development drilling campaigns. He is 100% focused and committed to achieving world class operations and HSE performance / results.


Ian has a B.Sc. Honours degree in Petroleum Engineering awarded from Imperial College.


David Ellix

David Ellix

David is Developments Director at Speedwell Energy, with particular responsibility for delivering the Cotton gas field development. An oil and gas professional with over 30 years’ experience, having worked at a senior level for oil companies, contractors, industry bodies and government departments. His experience covers all aspects of oil and gas field development, from concept to production, and the development and application of innovative technology. David has a track record of leadership and delivery in challenging and uncertain situations, including having been the first Managing Director of the Industry Technology Facilitator.


David is a Chartered Engineer and Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers. He has a BSc and PhD awarded by City University in London.