Local Authority Property and Estates 2023

Levelling Up and Regeneration

Wednesday 19th April 2023

Etc. Venues, 11 Portland Street, Manchester, M1 3HU

*note this is a live face-to face event only – there is no option to attend virtually*

Event Information

Wednesday 19th April 2023, 11 Portland Street, Manchester, M1 3HU

We are delighted to announce that  we will once again be staging the Local Authority Property & Estates conference this year to be held at 11 Portland St, Manchester on 19th April. This prestigious event, for many years a must attend feature of the public sector property professionals year, will see the return of current, expert, high profile and influential speakers from a diverse range of public and private sector organisations.

This event will allow circa 150 local authority delegates to attend, each of whom will do so completely free of charge, thus removing a significant cost barrier and facilitating a renewal or a creation of those vitally important networks with their peers and with a range of knowledgeable private sector advisors and practitioners.

A plenary session will start the day.  This session will feature senior, high profile property strategists and practitioners and will set the scene for the day exploring some of the key trends that will affect property and the public estate over the next decade.

Following the plenary the day will continue with a series of 30 minute work sessions and case studies.  These sessions will provide delegates the chance to dig deeper into different areas, themes, types of estate and explore how Local Authorities and the wider public sector can respond to challenges and opportunities.  Work sessions will be led by a mix of public and private sector presenters and will encourage interactivity.

Throughout the day there will also be chances to network with your peers within the exhibition area and sample the excellent catering that Etc venues provide.

Delegate places are free of charge for all property professionals employed within the UK public sector*.  Places will be allocated on a ‘first come, first served’ basis and must be booked in advance.  Don’t miss out on your place

*Terms & Conditions apply as detailed on booking

Conference Agenda

Wednesday 19th April 2023, 11 Portland Street, Manchester, M1 3HU

This conference will start at 10:00 (registration from 09:00) and will close at 16:30 approx.

Topics to be covered throughout the day include but are not limited to:

  • Solving Local Government’s Capability and Skills Crisis – It is a well-known fact that local authorities planning and placemaking teams are over-worked, under-funded and under-resourced. How do we address the resourcing and skill gaps in local government, to ensure councils are able to shape the places our communities deserve? Pooja Agrawal CEO of Public Practice, will discuss innovative and practical solutions to solving the crisis.
  • Stockport. Change Here – Stockport has undergone a radical, interventionist approach to regeneration over the last ten years which has been spearheaded in partnership with public and private sector organisations. The presentation will examine what has happened, how has it happened and why that approach was taken. It will also reflect on the lessons which have been learned.
  • Creating thriving places for thriving people – The UK is made up of many local communities. Those communities are part of a patchwork of local government. Some communities are thriving others are struggling, struggling through the loss of industry, migration of talent, changing demographics etc. The changing circumstances of ‘place’ has knock on effects for the distribution of funding, thus exacerbating the potential for unequitable outcomes. Creating a thriving ‘place’ with thriving ‘people’ is critical in delivering health, opportunity and wellbeing. Given the level of funding and timescales required to deliver thriving ‘places’ a coalition of funding and support is required that includes private investment, business and public funding. The ‘levelling up’ agenda is a brilliant catalyst to drive change. However, it will only be successful if carefully thought out strategies and delivery plans have been developed and followed. The challenge for the next decade will be finding the full funding required and putting in place the leadership to deliver the generational change required to address global imperatives such as global warming and national imperatives such as social inequalities and demographic change. It is a complex landscape, the delivery of which transcends political timeframes. It therefore requires a strategy and ownership community that jointly works beyond the normal boundaries of allegiance to safeguard outcomes.
  • Looking forward by looking back – One Public Estate: 10 years of place led collaboration – Reflecting on the last ten years of place based collaboration since the launch of One Public estate in 2103. How can the lessons from the last 10 years of partnership working across public sector property help us plan for the next ten years? The new Government Property Strategy seeks to create a smaller, better greener public estate: One Public Estate enables this through working ever more closely with places, to support Levelling-up through regeneration and much needed new homes.
  • Defining and addressing the problem – There are growing budgetary pressures on families and communities. Personal and lifestyle choices are having to be made that are diluting the focus / engagement on wider issues, such as net zero delivery. In parallel, local authorities and other regional bodies and businesses are also experiencing challenges with budget availability, increased pressures on service delivery, alongside changes to legislative requirements, discharging statutory duties and delivery against strategic plans, both regionally and nationally.  – This session will decouple the focus on people and place and reflect on the current headwinds, challenges and their impact on people and places and how solutions and focus differ between them.
  • Developing the deep relationships needed to deliver for local authorities – As skilled commercial developers and sustainable regeneration experts, LCR has the expertise and understanding to support local authorities. They have a history of working with relevant stakeholders to pool resources and unlock potential for meaningful developments. One such example is the Mayfield Partnership, a joint venture between LCR, U+I, Manchester City Council and Transport for Greater Manchester, which shows how advanced partnerships can create large-scale, complex projects. Local authorities play a major role in placemaking, and LCR can help support them with levelling up and regeneration by providing the resources, skills and expertise to help make a vision that serves the community a reality. In his presentation, Rick Lawrence will explain how organisations like LCR can build and nurture the relationships needed to deliver on complex local authority programmes, drawing on case studies where working with local authority has played a major role.
  • The future of the estates profession in public sector – a panel of ACES members from Chorley BC, Manchester CC & Lancashire CC who have recently qualified will discuss their route to the profession, projects, new technology and challenges.
  • Hybrid and hubs: how the public sector is unlocking potential with hybrid working – Join colleagues from local authority estate and property management for an interactive panel discussion to explore how hybrid working is delivering real change to public sector estates. This session will cover the challenges, techniques, technologies, and real-life experiences that were used to manage the new world of hybrid working in the public sector. We will discuss the change in attitude towards working, the workspace supply, and the ever-changing demand from staff and management.
  • Boosting incomes and strengthening community cohesion through better use of public spaces and facilities – Kajima Community recently launched their multi-venue booking platform into the London Borough of Hackney Council – the first local authority in the country to offer an online tool for people to take virtual tours of its community halls and make bookings. The improved efficiency the platform offers is expected to create an immediate increase in the use of Hackney’s community facilities. A short trial period of the website across a selection of the 37 available sites began in December 2022 and saw a 20 percent increase in booking enquiries. Jack will be discussing:
    – Hackney’s circumstances and challenges, and those facing other councils, linked with the use of their public assets
    – The approach taken to working with Hackney, developing a tailored solution to suit their needs
    – An explanation of the solution and process put in place, to address their initial challenges
    – The outcomes achieved and key learnings
  • Achieving net zero: the critical role of local authority property for place-based decarbonisation

Please note agenda will be updated regularly, speakers, subject matter and timings may be subject to change

Plenary Speakers

Wednesday 19th April 2023, 11 Portland Street, Manchester, M1 3HU

Conference Chair: Dave Sweeney, Associate Director Of Partnerships and Sustainability, NHS Cheshire and Merseyside and Chair of Liverpool & Sefton Health Partnership Board

Dave was one of the first fully integrated Executive Strategic Commissioners that span both the CCG, LA, Community, Vol Sector, Sport and Environment. Dave led early system integration resulting in the pooling of over 42m local statutory provision. Dave has 21 years experience working in NHS and LA transformation/various levels of change management. Dave is a multi award winning commissioner; was awarded UK Social Value Leader 2016. Passionate about mental wellbeing, social movement and harnessing the power of communities. In December 2016 Dave picked up an NHS Leadership Award for ‘Service Development and Innovation’.  Dave graduated and is part of the alumni from the Yale Global Leadership program on behalf of Cheshire and Merseyside. In 2017 Dave left his Chief Officer role at NHS Halton CCG to help build the vision/design the implementation for Cheshire and Merseyside STP. A challenging role that covered 12 CCGs and 9 places. Dave designed the 10 point plan that was adopted across all places to support successful place integrated implementation. Dave spent 3 years working as Public Sector Director for Renover, ensuring the connectivity to ensure optimisation of NHS estate.

Dave is now a Director in the newly established NHS Cheshire and Merseyside and leads on Sustainability and a wide range of system aspects including the Green plan and implementing place and scale opportunities to meet the net zero targets. In summer of 2022 Dave was honoured to be named as the new Chair for Liverpool and Sefton Health Partnership Board. He is a World record holder Dad of two perfect girls, a sport fanatic and guitarist/singer.

Pooja Agrawal, CEO, Public Practice

Pooja Agrawal is Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Public Practice. She is an architect and planner who worked as a public servant at Homes England and the Greater London Authority and at private practices including Publica and We Made That. She co-founded social equality platform Sound Advice and co-published Now You Know, a compendium of fifty essays exploring spatial and racial inequality. She is a Trustee of Open City, a Fellow at the Institute of Innovation and Public Purpose and a Fellow at the RSA. She was nominated for the Planner’s Woman of Influence in 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022.

Mike Harries, Senior Partnerships Manager, One Public Estate, Local Government Association

Mike has over 30 years’ experience working in the public sector, including Chief Executive, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Place Director. His approach is collaborative, working across whole systems with public and private sector partners, including central and local government, to enable greater impact. He has worked in the public and private sectors, including as a property consultant with a venture capitalist owned business. He is a former Chartered Surveyor specialising in strategic property asset management and has led several property services organisations.

Mike has worked with councils to get the best out of their property estate, to re-purpose key assets and use their portfolio as a catalyst to enable service transformation and regeneration.

Paul Richards, Director of Development and Regeneration, Stockport Council and Chief Executive, Stockport Mayoral Development Corporation

Paul has been the Chief Executive of Stockport Mayoral Development Corporation since its formation in 2019 and has lead on the delivery of both its strategic vision and a number of schemes delivering the regeneration of 130 acres to deliver up to 4,000 new homes and 1 million sq.ft. of workspace, creating a new neighbourhood in the heart of the town.

In addition, he is the Director of Development and Regeneration for Stockport Council, a role which he started in 2017 and has delivered schemes across the retail, leisure, office, and light industrial sectors for the Council who have taken a direct interventionist approach to changing its town. He is responsible for the Council’s £1 billion transformation programme.

Prior to joining the Council, he had previously held a number of senior roles in the private sector having been Property Director for Findel PLC, Homeform Group and Wine Cellar with a background in managing large occupational and investment portfolios and capital works programmes.

Terry Stocks MBE, Director of Property UK & Europe, Faithful + Gould

Terry is a Chartered Structural and Civil Engineer with over 40 years’ experience; he has been awarded an MBE for his services to construction innovation. Terry has worked in the public and private sectors, delivering projects across wide social and economic infrastructure asset class types. He is currently Faithful+Gould’s UK and Europe Director of Property, and was formerly Estates Director for the Ministry of Justice (MOJ).

Terry has led key government construction initiatives, including the UK Cabinet Office IPA BIM mandate, the cross-government Modern Methods of Construction Group and the University of Cambridge Centre for Digital Built Britain. Terry is a technical advisor for nima (UK BIM Alliance), and a steering group member for the government’s Data Interoperability Working Group. Terry is leading a Homes England benchmark study on modern methods of construction in the residential sector.

Session Speakers

Wednesday 19th April 2023, 11 Portland Street, Manchester, M1 3HU

Naomi Bates

Property Consultant

Whittington Health NHS Trust


Sebastian Berry

Estates Officer

Chorley Borough Council

Persephone Galanis

Graduate Development Surveyor

Manchester City Council

Joe Harris


Matrix Booking

Rick Lawrence

Partnerships Director

LCR Property, UK Government’s placemaking expert

Robbie Metcalfe

Lancashire County Council


Matthew Saunders

Director of Estates and Business Services

West Yorkshire Police

Ben Simcock

Strategic Development Director

Equans UK & Ireland

Ben has spent almost 20 years of his career trying to improve how people and places interact, and the last four years focussing on how to decarbonise places at city scale.

Joining ENGIE in 2018, Ben worked as a Bid Director, before being promoted into his current role as Strategic Development Director for Equans UK & Ireland in January 2022. He is responsible for the development and delivery of the economic, environmental and social value strategy within the business’ Places & Communities division; and develops capabilities, products and propositions to enable it.

A graduate of philosophy from the University of Liverpool, Ben enjoys music, football and podcasts in his spare time.


Ruth Smethurst

Customer Experience Lead, Workplace Services

Government Property Agency


Andrew Stirling

Head of Property

Essex County Council

Terry Stocks MBE

Director of Property UK & Europe

Faithful + Gould

Neil Webster

Head of Engagement

ACES (The Association of Chief Estates Surveyors and Property Managers in the Public Sector)

Jack Woodley

Kajima Community

With extensive experience in education and his recent expansion of work in the public sector, Jack is passionate about delivering solutions that help organisations thrive. At Kajima Community, Jack’s focus is on bringing to market our multi-venue lettings platform for any organisation with a property portfolio that wants to maximise the use of community assets and estate profitability. Kajima Community’s solutions are transforming the facility hire process to achieve increased income, cost and time-savings and transparent reporting. Jack is an active volunteer with the Careers and Enterprise Company, working closely with his chosen secondary school to mentor and skill up young adults in preparation for entering the world of work.

Exhibitors and Supporters

Sponsor Carter Jonas

Event Timetable

Wednesday 19th April 2023, 11 Portland Street, Manchester, M1 3HU

09:00 – 10:00 Registration & Networking breakfast – continental breakfast provided

10:00 – 11:15  Plenary session

11:15 – 11:45 Refreshments and networking

11:45 – 12:15  Defining and addressing the problem

12:15 – 12:45  Hybrid and hubs: how the public sector is unlocking potential with hybrid working 

12:45 – 13:45 Lunch and networking

13:45 – 14:15  Achieving net zero: the critical role of local authority property for place-based decarbonisation

14:15 – 14:45  Boosting incomes and strengthening community cohesion through better use of public spaces and facilities

14:45 – 15:10 Refreshments and networking

15:10 – 15:40  Developing the deep relationships needed to deliver for local authorities 

15:40 – 16:10  The future of the estates profession in public sector 

16:10 – 16:30 Panel & Chair’s closing remarks

16:30 – Conference Close

16:30 – Drinks Reception

Please note times, agenda and speakers may be subject to change

Contact Us

Delegate Enquiries (Including Bookings)

Georgia Richardson – Conference Manager
– 0161 482 7853

Exhibition & Sponsorship Enquiries

Sharon Quinn – Head of Business Development
– 0161 482 7859

Conference Logistics & Presentation & Print Enquiries

Georgia Richardson – Conference Manager
– 0161 482 7853


– 0161 482 7850


Public Sector Connect Ltd
Lockside Mill
St Martins Road

(please note this is the organisers business address – NOT the venue for the event)