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Sir Howard Bernstein appointed IED Patron


Sir Howard Bernstein, the former Chief Executive of Manchester City Council, is the new Patron of the Institute for Economic Development (IED). Sir Howard takes up the unpaid role from retiring Patron, Lord Michael Heseltine, who held the position for the last four years.

The 64-year-old stood down as Manchester City Council’s Chief Executive in March 2017 after nearly 20 years in the job. He spent nearly half a century at Manchester Town Hall, having joined in 1971 as an 18-year-old junior clerk.

Responsible for setting development goals and encouraging investment, Sir Howard championed the Metrolink, brought the 2002 Commonwealth Games to the city and supported the creation of new areas and buildings such as the Manchester Arena, the City of Manchester Stadium and the Sportcity district in east Manchester.

Policy achievements include establishing working relationships between the ten Greater Manchester local authorities, resulting in the formation of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority. This supported the development of the Northern Powerhouse initiative and led to a series of historic devolution agreements – transferring significant powers and resources from central government to Greater Manchester.

Following these agreements, he also led the development of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Greater Manchester local authorities, NHS England and the Greater Manchester Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) which secured the devolution of all health and social care funding to Greater Manchester, putting in place new partnership arrangements that are helping to make services more financially viable while improving care outcomes for residents.

Prior to his role as Manchester City Council Chief Executive, Sir Howard led Manchester Millennium Ltd where he oversaw the transformation of the city centre following the IRA bombing in 1996.

Speaking of his new role at the IED, Sir Howard said: “The IED provides exceptional support as the UK’s leading professional body representing economic development and regeneration practitioners working for local and regional communities. It provides counsel to its members on issues that I am deeply passionate about, such as local and regional authority development, economic and infrastructure regeneration and place management. I hope to support the IED’s organisational development to benefit its members, which in turn an impact on those working ‘on the ground’ in local government.”

IED Chair Bev Hurley: “I would formally like to thank Lord Heseltine for his support and encouragement and to welcome Sir Howard Bernstein. Sir Howard is hugely respected for his achievements in local government and his strategic input to the IED’s development will be invaluable. We are extremely fortunate to have such a prestigious and knowledgeable successor to help us thrive in the years to come.”


Contact: Phil Smith, Institute of Economic Development PR consultant, 01778 218180 / 07866 436159 / phil@philsmithcommunications.co.uk.

Notes to editors:

The Institute of Economic Development (IED) is the UK’s leading independent professional body representing economic development and regeneration practitioners. Established over 30 years ago, the IED's key objective is to represent the interests of economic development practitioners and ensure their views are widely expressed and noted. The IED is committed to demonstrating the value of economic development work for local and regional communities; the pursuit of best practice in economic development and the attainment of the highest standards of professional conduct and competence.

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