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GBC Chief Exec To Speak at Shopping Centre Conference

Published on: 20 Aug, 2012
Updated on: 20 Aug, 2012

David Hill, Chief Executive at GBC

David Hill, Guildford Borough Council’s Chief Executive, is to speak at a British Council of Shopping Centres (BCSC) conference in Liverpool on 10 September, an event at which retail expert Mary Portas is scheduled to be a keynote speaker.

The seminar in which Mr Hill will speak is, ‘All is not lost, retail led regeneration is alive’. Guildford is to be used as an ‘illustrative example’.

The BCSC website adds: ‘This year sees the lowest level of new retail development being delivered for decades. BCSC is of the view that new retail development is critical to the rejuvenation of places, creation of jobs, driver of local economic growth and the overall productivity of the retail sector.

‘At the same time Government is driving a significant devolution agenda with new powers being vested in local authorities especially in the areas of planning and local government finance. Despite all the gloom, things are happening. Using Guildford as an illustrative example of positive development news, listen to the public sector, investor and retail perspective on what the future holds for retail led regeneration.’

The BCSC Logo for the Liverpool Conference

Chairing the seminar will be Alistair Parker, Cushman & Wakefield. The BCSC website says: “Alistair has long worked on retail-led town centre development on behalf of both property companies and local authorities at home and abroad. Current projects include the town centre schemes in Sheffield, Ealing, Guildford and Staines. Other work includes John Lewis ‘At Home’ acquisitions, the relocation of London’s Design Museum and asset recovery advice for banks.”

Cushman & Wakefield are commercial property brokers and consultants who wrote The Town Centre Development Study for GBC in March 2010. They are still engaged by GBC as consultants on town planning. Their client account portfolio also includes the John Lewis Group.  Cushman & Wakefield have already represented John Lewis in their location acquisitions for stores in the following locations: Croydon; Tunbridge Wells; Exeter; Chester: Chelmsford; Tamworth: Ashford; York and Chichester.

Waitrose, part of the John Lewis Group, is making a planning application for a new store in Haydon Place/York Road. Jeremy Collins the John Lewis property director withdrew from the seminar weeks ago.

The third member of the seminar panel, Michael Coughlin, is the executive director at the Local Government Association and former chief executive at Reading Unitary Authority. Previously he served as Chief Executive at Crawley Borough Council in West Sussex.

David Hill was asked to comment but declined to do so.

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