Future London Leaders 20: Proposals for London

Future London Leaders Round 20 wrapped up on 6 March with ‘Proposals for London’ based on the course theme of Culture. The event was kindly hosted by JLL.

The final task before graduation was an invitation to combine research with out-of-the-box thinking and personal or professional experience.

In addition to leadership skills workshops, the FLL20 programme included a visit to LB Waltham Forest, the first London Borough of Culture, to learn about the council’s cultural strategy for 2019 and beyond; a trip along the City of London’s Culture Mile; and a field trip exploring how to maximise the value of cultural and heritage assets around the International Quarter and East Bank, a new cultural destination atLondon’s Olympic Park.

For the proposals, candidates focused on topics including how to use local cultural anchors to catalyse regeneration; more support for the survival and wellbeing of distinctive local communities; using grassroots models like community-led housing to keep artists and makers in London; and the decentralisation of London’s cultural mega-institutions.

The audience included mentors, course presenters, FoL board members, sponsors and friends of Future of London. All voted on the proposals, with the following results:

Favourite idea

John Booker

John Booker – Head of Land, Red Loft
Exclusive Culture – combating gentrification through a new retail offer

Replacing a café with an expensive coffee shop or pub with a gastro bar ostracises residents from their own neighbourhood, fostering resentment of regeneration and promoting the perception of ‘gentrification’. My proposal is to establish an ‘affordable commercial’ offer, managed and owned by the equivalent of a housing association for the commercial sector. Offering subsidised rents, business development support, and tailoring the retail offer in response to consultation with residents. The Charity would promote local economic sustainability, support social integration, and address the ‘exclusive culture’ of regeneration through a balanced retail offer.

Most feasible

Steve Nicola

Steve Nicola – Social and Economic Regeneration Manager, Notting Hill Genesis
Arts and culture as a catalyst for change on Grahame Park

Grahame Park in LB Barnet is an estate undergoing major regeneration. Approximately 3,000 new homes will be built here over the next 15 years. Planning permission for the next phase was recently refused by the Mayor of London. As a result, the redesign of the scheme to increase density offers the community another 5+ years to use the estate concourse. During this time, Notting Hill Genesis will transform an empty library into a community hub with funding from the Mayor’s Good Growth Fund. This proposal explorse how an arts and culture pilot project could be the catalyst for improving people’s life chances and lay the foundations for transformative work in the community.

Best pitch

Charli Bristow – Research & Projects, Future of London
On the edge: London at cultural cross-road

London’s cultural capital is integral to its economy, packaged and sold internationally. While London is open, an increasing number of the city’s low-income creatives feel shut out. Since 2015, reports have emerged of this demographic moving en masse to places like Berlin and Lisbon. While efforts to tackle the affordability of housing and workspace are crucial, the problem is complex. Places change and the capital is dynamic, but with the transformation of areas such as SoHo and Shoreditch the cry gets louder: “London is losing its edge”. This proposal offers community-led approaches to housing and regeneration as catalysts of culture: vehicles for empowerment and sources of a much-needed counter -narrative.

Honorable mention

Dan Evans

Dan Evans – Senior Planner, Arup 
The decentralisation of Central London’s cultural mega-institutions

London, and in particular Central London, has a huge cultural offer, with many mega-institutions such as international galleries, museums and music venues in a concentrated area. Despite this, the economic and cultural impact on many Londoners is limited. In LB Brent’s successful submission to become Borough of Culture 2020, for example, they noted that very few young people working with them had ever been to the Tate and none had heard of the National Theatre. My proposal explores the opportunity to ‘decentralise’ cultural mega-institutions to improve their local economic and cultural impact.

The presentations were followed by a graduation ceremony and celebration.


Looking ahead, FLL 21 is in full swing and will graduate on 12 June, while Round 22 launches on 24 April 2019. To find out more about our bespoke professional development courses, visit our Leaders course pages.

For now, best of luck to all our FLL20 graduates and mentors, and keep in touch!

  • Dougal Ainsley, Senior Associate, Lewis Silkin
  • Sarah Birt, Housing Area Manager, GLA Housing & Land
  • John Booker, Head of Land, Red Loft
  • Charli Bristow, Research & Projects Manager, Future of London
  • Dan Evans, Senior Planner, Arup
  • Pippa Gueterbock, Regeneration Manager, LB Haringey
  • Preeti Gulati Tyagi, Planning Policy Team Leader, RB Kensington & Chelsea
  • Jessica Lynch, Senior Consultant, Hatch Regeneris
  • Jonathan McClue, Principal Planning Officer – Development Management, LB Camden
  • Steve Nicola, Social & Economic Regeneration Manager, Notting Hill Genesis
  • Owain Roberts, Senior Development Manager, LLDC
  • Mathieu Rogers, Area Regeneration Manager, LB Hackney
  • Britta Stoehr, Regeneration Project Manager, LB Waltham Forest
  • Alina Toosy, Senior Architect, Pollard Thomas Edwards
  • Claire Williams, Principal Planning Officer, LB Enfield

* * *

A big thanks also to Future London Leaders Round 20 Mentors for their time and insight!=

  • Mark Adams, Regeneration Programme Manager, LB Waltham Forest
  • Caroline Harper, Chief Planner, Be First
  • Richard Hill, Group Chief Executive, One Housing
  • Suzanne Johnson, Head of Economic Regeneration, LB Hackney
  • Steve Kennard, Director of Regeneration, Hadley Property Group
  • Debra Levison, Senior Manager, Housing Programmes & Services, GLA Housing & Land
  • Andreas Markides, Managing Director, Markides Associates
  • Lynne Miles, Associate Director – Integrated City Planning, Arup
  • Neil Parlett, Director – Real Estate Advisory, Lambert Smith Hampton
  • Maggie Rafalowicz, Director, Campbell Tickell
  • Luke Riley, Projects Director, Swan Housing
  • Kaye Stout, Partner, Pollard Thomas Edwards
  • Danny Sutcliffe, Partner, Red Loft
  • Leanne Tritton, Managing Director, Ing Media
  • Mike Ward, Executive Director, Mojo Advisory Services
  • Eleanor Young, Director, Blackstock Partners

Future London Leaders is sponsored in part by Lovell and hosted by Lewis Silkin. The course, alongside the next-level Leaders Plus offer, is known as one of London’s top cross-sector leadership programmes and has more than 415 graduates in its Alumni Network.