Westminster Social Policy Forum

Next steps for regional development and the future of the Northern Powerhouse

Friday, 21st April 2017

Central Manchester


Please note that this seminar will take place in Central Manchester.

Delegates at this seminar will consider the next steps for supporting regional growth across the country, including the Prime Minister’s policy priorities on devolution, economic growth outside of the capital, and the future for a ‘Northern Powerhouse’ in England.

It will bring together policymakers and key stakeholders to examine the accountability of Mayor-led city regions - as well as options for their structures and roles in different areas of the country, including the devolution of powers over transport, housing, planning and skills throughout the four devolution deals that have been agreed across the North of England in Sheffield, Greater Manchester, Tees Valley and Liverpool.

Further planned sessions focus on how best to support the retention and development of a highly skilled workforce, and how the use of Enterprise zones, the plans for retention of business rates, and improving transport infrastructure could help businesses to expand and boost local job opportunities.

The conference will also be an opportunity to discuss foreign investment in the region, and how foreign direct investment projects could help boost the Northern economy in terms of increased jobs, economic activity and tourism.

Guest of Honour

Councillor Sean Anstee

Leader, Trafford Council

Guest of Honour

Councillor Sean Anstee

Leader, Trafford Council

Keynote Speaker

Professor Tony Travers

Director, LSE London, London School of Economics and Political Science


Lord Scriven

Councillor and former Leader, Sheffield City Council


Speaker confirmed from The Skills Company

Julian Cobley

Managing Director, The Skills and Growth Company, Cheshire East

Gary Stewart

Director, Open Future UK and Wayra UK, Telefónica

Paul Massey

General Counsel, Crowdcube

David Brown

Chief Executive Officer, Transport for the North

Rob Mukherjee

Head of North West Regional Business, Vodafone

Grant Peggie

Director, Venture Capital Solutions, British Business Bank

Professor Nick Wright

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation, Newcastle University