A security pass is required at all times to attend events in either of the secure Conference venues, Manchester Central or The Midland Hotel.


16.00 DevoConnect

Midland Hotel : Fairclough

Are Cities Leaving Our Towns Behind?

Bringing together senior figures for a substantive discussion on the growing problem of geographic inequality between our towns and cities


The Government has indicated that one of its key priorities will be addressing the growing divide between our towns and cities. But what will it mean in practice to shift our focus from the city to places in general? How might we imagine growth models which focus on the needs of people outside cities? These questions are especially important after the Brexit vote, which drew many London-based observers’ attention to smaller towns and rural areas. What next for the highly centralised UK?

18.00 Crisis

Manchester Central : Exchange 11

Housing Benefit: The key to ending rough sleeping by 2027?

A panel event looking at how to ensure Housing Benefit covers the cost of housing in all local areas across Great Britain


An interactive panel discussion, the event will consider the role Housing Benefit has to play in helping the Conservative Party meet its manifesto commitment to end rough sleeping by 2027. Using local data from new research, there will be an opportunity to find out how affordable housing is in your area for people in receipt of Housing Benefit.


12.45 West Midlands Combined Authority

Midland Hotel : Victoria Suite

Connecting Jobs and Communities - How WMCA is Building the Future

Hear how WMCA is determined to succeed in improving people's lives.


A desire to innovate and a determination to succeed in improving people's lives have long been defining characteristics of the West Midlands. Our region has been making its mark on the world for for hundreds of years. That spirit lives on today, embodied by WMCA. We are driven to make a positive impact for this generation, and for generations to come. The time to transform the region we serve is now - time to build a healthier, happier, better connected and more prosperous West Midlands.

16.00 High Speed Rail Industry Leaders, Rail Delivery Group & Railway Industry Association

Radisson Blu Edwardian Manchester, Free Trade Hall, Peter Street, Manchester, M2 5GP : 15/16

HSRIL, RDG & RIA Drinks Reception

Reception exploring the benefits of high speed rail through key speeches and networking opportunities


17.30 CBI supported by BVCA

Midland Hotel : Derby Suite

Unlocking enterprise: delivering a new partnership between government and business

This fringe event will look at how government and business can work in partnership to build a more competitive Britain and unlock prosperity in the UK


With political uncertainty continuing to affect the UK’s economic growth prospects, now is the time for business and government to work in partnership to seize the opportunities before us. By showing the world the UK is a great place to do business, equipping the UK to compete and win on the world stage and backing business as a force for good, we can build a prosperous society for every region and nation.


08.30 Westminster City Council

Midland Hotel : Royce Suite

Setting local government free: fiscal devolution

Join us for a panel discussion on the future of local government and devolution from 8.30am – 9.30am at the Midland Hotel.


Local Government is at a crossroads. Over the past decade councils have become more creative with their budgeting to meet the needs of their residents, businesses and visitors. Can local government find a more sustainable way of funding itself? Should local government be allowed to keep more of the taxes it collects? Should localism mean fiscal devolution? Join us for a panel discussion on the future of local government and devolution from 8.30am – 9.30am at the Midland Hotel.

13.00 techUK & Cisco

Midland Hotel : Victoria Suite

In Conversation with the Rt. Hon. Nicky Morgan MP

Join techUK and Ciscco for an in conversation with the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport


Scot Garnder, UK & Ireland MD for Cisco, and Julian David, CEO of techUK hold an in conversation with the new DCMS Secretary of State Nicky Morgan MP.

16.00 Placeshapers

Manchester Central : Exchange 1

Delivering Housing in Partnership

Government has committed to delivering 300,000 new homes per year. Find out how partnerships can help the Government meet this target.


Housing is a critical issue in supporting a dynamic economy. Placeshapers is a network of over 100 housing associations managing 1 million homes. This session will focus on the West Midlands Housing Partnership and how it is delivering homes and achieving wider economic benefits. This session is suitable for people with an interest in housing from any region of the country.

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Important Notes
* All conference events, speakers, dates, times, and locations are subject to change.
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