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Delivering Place Competitiveness (Tom Stannard)

Tom Stannard, Director of Economy and Skills, Oldham Council

Delivering Place Competitiveness CPD workshop

Tom Stannard is Director of Economy and Skills at Oldham Council, one of the ten large Greater Manchester local authorities serving around 23,000 residents. Having joined the Council in 2015, Tom’s remit covers all aspects of regeneration, economic development, planning, housing delivery, property and skills and investment. He attended the IED’s Delivering Place Competitiveness CPD workshop in May 2018.

“My objectives from the workshop were to have a refresher and provide challenge on all aspects of place marketing to support the development of a new inward investment and business support plan in Oldham, and to improve place competitiveness as we go through the key land use discussions currently taking place in the Greater Manchester spatial plan debates,” said Tom, who is also Deputy National Spokesperson for Economic Prosperity and Housing at the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives (SOLACE), and a Board Director and Trustee of the Centre for Local Economic Strategies. “The best aspects of the workshop were detailed case studies and practical examples to work through in the real world. It was particularly useful to assist understanding the investment decision as it occurs at firm level, and the process and tests applied to longlist/shortlist and finally decide on sites for investment and/or relocation. The trainer/facilitator was excellent.”

Tom, who in a career spanning over 20 years has worked in a variety of policy and regeneration roles in high performing councils across the UK – Blackburn with Darwen, the London Borough of Hounslow and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea – said he had already utilised his learning from the workshop. “It has informed strategy and applied policy in our investment strategy, our approach to the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework, and also in our interactions with firms to assist them in taking final business case propositions for investment in Oldham to their boards,” he revealed. “I would absolutely recommend these IED workshops to others – practical, real-world examples with experienced trainers that are very useful to the practice of economic development. I would also like to see the IED producing similar events across the breadth our profession covers.”