Placemaking Strategy Conference - Keynote Presentations

Focusing on content that can make a real difference to our towns and communities, the Placemaking Strategy Conference brings together case studies, insights and thought-leadership to offer an engaging and inspiring learning experience for its attendees.

This is the only event of its type for people who have a passion for creating the high street of the future. Our programme has been designed to ensure maximum benefit for all attendees – from handy tips to insightful statistics, lessons learnt to meaningful case studies, you’ll enjoy a variety of content at the summit, including:

  • Hearing success stories from engaging expert speakers.
  • Opportunity for you to quiz the speakers about what they have shared, in order to delve a little deeper
  • Gaining insight and inspiration from how other areas have delivered projects that have had a positive impact.
  • Time away from your daily routine, allowing you to focus on the trends and opportunities that will really add value to your community.

Throughout the conference, our keynote will inform and inspire attendees on a range of hot topics – you can find out more about the overall plans for the day via our agenda page. Keynotes for the forthcoming event are not yet confirmed, so see examples from a past event below.

Jim Hubbard

Opening Keynote: Ensuring Vibrant Places

In this opening keynote session, Jim Hubbard of British Retail Consortium shares insight into the impact of the recent budget on retail and town centres.

The retail industry and its three million employees are dispersed across all UK communities and ninety per cent of us live or work in town centres. However, the economic impact of town centres is not well understood.

Town centres often with a large retail presence serve as community and economic hubs across the UK. People depend on places for employment, to shop, for entertainment, public services, cultural events and businesses for profit making and growth.

Given the transformation well underway more should be done to create an environment conducive to attracting investment.

John Webber

What Does the 2017 Rating Revaluation mean for Retailers

In this session, one of the opening keynote presentations, John Webber of Colliers International shares insight into the impact of the 2017 rating revaluation on retailers and on the places where they trade.

Colliers understand that budgeting for 2017 onwards is high on the agenda for many businesses, large and small. John and his team are ahead of the VOA in terms of their research and also their understanding and appreciation of the dynamics and drivers behind setting a multiplier and transitional scheme.

In this session attendees will learn from John’s unrivalled knowledge of the national rental values across the retail sector. John will explore how retailers, particularly those with regional portfolios, need to look closely at their planning and budgeting. Changes in liabilities, both positive and negative, could impact on the sustainability of stores, whilst also providing more leverage for rental negotiations from the perspective of both landlord and tenant.

Gina Wilson

TestTown: pop-ups to imagine and create your future place

TestTown is an initiative designed to support emerging town centre and high street entrepreneurs. Created and managed by Carnegie UK Trust from 2013-2016, the idea is simple. Towns and education providers make available their vacant spaces, and provide training and support to young businesses to test out their ideas in pop-up shops in town centres. In return, young businesses offer their talent, creativity and energy to allow towns to test future high street and town centre solutions. TestTown events have been held in 19 towns and city districts across the UK and Ireland. Learn our top tips and see what great talent can do in the UK and Ireland when given a chance.

Tim Radley

Creating Retail & Social Destinations. The Strategy & Delivery of "The Right Shops & the Best Shops!"

Place managers, counsellors, BID Directors, town planners and all those responsible for the regeneration of town centres & high streets – the simple truth for thriving retail destinations is the right assortment of shops with each one as good as it possibly can be!

Delegates will learn how a Retail Strategy should define the most commercial number of shops and types of retailer, the correct market positioning, and the integration of retail with the wider town proposition; to deliver vibrant social destinations: and how effective Retail Management can deliver “quick-win!” cost-effective commercial successes including practical improvements to local retailers.

80% of retail sales will still be offline by 2020 - #WDYT Good News or Bad News?

#WDYT (What do you Think) is a social campaign that drives social, digital and physical footfall.

High streets need to keep pace with their increasingly digital consumers.
This session explores what a future high street looks like and what that means for shoppers, retailers and town centre managers.

The right digital strategy can accelerate your high street’s evolution… how do you know what is right for you?

Polly Barnfield, OBE and Kevan Blackadder from Cheltenham BID will share what being involved in #WDYT has delivered for Cheltenham and the feedback he has received and the lessons learned.

Paul Thomas

Transforming town centres through heritage led regeneration

How is the historic retail core of Margaret Thatcher and Isaac Newton’s home town being transformed through partnership action?

Hear how a shop front improvement scheme not only revitalises the independent trading environment but also encourages investment and boosts occupancy amidst multiple retail challenges. The session will identify how the program was initiated through to practical delivery and management.

What does success looks like, how to choose which buildings to renovate, who to partner with to make things happen and how can similar projects work for you?

Jeremy Rucker

'Creating the WOW factor'

As places struggle to compete what are the tools we can employ to create the one off WOW installation or events that differentiates our place and drives social media and footfall.

This workshop will use examples to illustrate and define a WOW factor then together we will create our own WOW factor. If you attended last years Experience Workshop then this is the ultimate experience.

Ian Ferguson

Derby's Cathedral Quarter - GBHS winner 2016

The birth and development of a new place in an historical setting. Derby’s Cathedral Quarter did not exist before it became a BID in 2008. It was once the commercial core of the city centre, but in 2007 Westfields investment to the south re-located Marks and Spencer and Debenhams away from the area having a massive impact upon footfall and the retail layout of the city.

Today the area is a lifestyle destination which many people assume has been around for ever. Since the BID has started the area has seen new investment taking shape in such a way as to reinforce the brand values of the area of individual, diverse and inspiring.