Unlocking the High Streets Opportunity..
March 25th 2021
Session 1 - Unlocking the High Streets through Public & Private Collaboration
Please login to view and download the event resources.
High Street Task Force
Mark is an award-winning entrepreneur and investor in town centres, having co-founded the developer Ellandi in 2008. At Ellandi, Mark has helped lead its mission to create the UK’s most inclusive and sustainable communities, raising over £1.5bn pounds to invest in more than 30 communities across the UK and Northern Ireland, from Enniskillen to Folkestone.
In a career over 25 years Mark has worked for both owners and occupiers of town centre properties and in 2019 was President of Revo; a leading membership body that represents the interests of owners, occupiers and local authorities in promoting thriving retail places. During this time, he successfully led an initiative to broaden the membership base to embrace the public sector and the launch of the Diploma in Retail and Leisure Place Management in partnership with Solent University.
Ellandi has sponsored the Great British High Street and Mark was a judge in 2019; over the years a number of Ellandi projects have enthusiastically entered and were proud to be shortlisted. Ellandi projects have also been recognised with numerous awards for diversity, design, customer service, marketing, community impact and sustainability on a national and international basis.
Mark is a regular commentator on town centre issues in both industry and national media, including The Times, FT and the BBC. He is an in demand public speaker often covering topics such as The Need/Opportunity for Change in Town Centres and Public/Private Partnerships.
Director Town Centre & Consumer Brands
Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe
Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority
Leader of Bradford Council
Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe is Leader of Bradford Council and in August 2017 was elected as Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, which is now the only female led Combined Authority in the country. During her time at the Combined Authority, Susan has always been a lead on Skills, and now as Chair maintains this passion and responsibility.
Susan is driven to achieve great things for the region, focusing on the central priorities of boosting productivity, delivering 21st century transport and enabling inclusive and clean growth. Susan, alongside fellow West Yorkshire Leaders, focuses on these priorities to progress the region’s ambitions and contribute to the Combined Authority’s vision of making the region known globally as a place where everyone can build great businesses, careers and lives.
Before politics Susan had her own business, worked in a Marketing agency and spent five years in a management role at a national newspaper. Until being elected as Council Leader she had been working for Business in the Community, a national charity which promotes responsible business practice. There she managed the Healthy High Streets regeneration programme, a national programme operating in 67 towns across the UK.
As Chair of the Combined Authority Susan is dedicated to the task of driving the region forward as an outward-looking, confident and thriving economy with an enterprising young population, a proud past and an exciting future.
City of Wolverhampton Council
Tim is Chief Executive of the City of Wolverhampton Council having been appointed to the role in July 2018.
Prior to this, he was the council’s Deputy Managing Director and Strategic Director of Place where his portfolio of responsibilities included city development, city housing, city transport, city environment, corporate property and commercialism.
Tim is an experienced strategic local government director, specialising in place shaping, organisational change management and community regeneration. He has a proven track record of developing and delivering complex, innovative projects and programmes and has overseen a regeneration programme which has £3.7 billion of public and private investment either on site or planned in the city.
In the five years he has worked at the City of Wolverhampton Council, Tim has played a major part in the transformation of the city and the council. This was nationally recognised in June 2017 when the City of Wolverhampton Council won a record four awards at the prestigious MJ Local Government Achievement Awards 2017 including Local Authority of the Year, Most Improved Council and Senior Leadership Team of the Year.
Tim has over 20 years’ experience in local government working for Liverpool City Council, London Borough of Hillingdon, Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council and Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council before joining the City of Wolverhampton Council in May 2013.
He represents City of Wolverhampton Council on a number of external forums across the region and city including the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA), Association of Black Country Authorities and Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and as Chair of the Board of Governors at the City of Wolverhampton College.
Leslie Jones Architecture
James Cons is an architect, he holds a Diploma in Project Management from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, a Master of Business Administration in Construction and Real Estate and is a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects.
As Managing Director of Leslie Jones, James provides leadership and project direction for both clients and colleagues alike. James is passionate about our town and city centres and the challenges that are being faced through the decline of retail in particular. He is heavily involved in the current debate on our urban futures, commenting: “Such speedy change is challenging the ability of our infrastructure, built environment, policies and occupational models to keep up. Town centres and their stakeholders must find ways to react to this change in the short and medium term such that their long-term strategies might be informed and able to accommodate the way in which we will be living, working and playing in the future.”
James is a keen exponent of collaboration, leading the Urbankind initiative which seeks to bring together appropriate skills focused on improving the futures of our urban centres. James comments further; “Those that succeed in rapidly re-defining their relevance to the changing world and the nature of the communities they serve will thrive.”
James joined Leslie Jones in 1993, having previously worked for the global retail design consultancy, Fitch. He became an Associate Partner of the practice in 2000, a Director in 2005 following incorporation of the practice and then Managing Director in 2013. With a heritage in retail design James has been an active member of this community having chaired the Revo Gold Awards in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Deputy Director (Interim) Regen and Urban Policy, Policy Directorate Cities and Local Growth Unit