Ipswich Central has announced that it is providing the funding to bring in a former government advisor who once tipped the county town as “hot…. seriously hot” as Chair of the Ipswich Vision project.
Urban regeneration expert, Jackie Sadek, will take the helm from 1st November as the town centre begins it slow recovery from the economic shock of covid and Vision partners adopt the bold new strategy to turn Ipswich into the UK’s first Connected Town. This will include new homes being built from undeveloped and underused buildings, with many more people living centrally as a result and creating a stronger trading environment for local businesses.
Last week, we published our next 5-year plan for 2022 to 2027, in which we pledged an intention to spend up to £4million on transforming life in the town centre, alongside the £25million committed through the government’s Town Deal programme. One week later our Chair, Terry Baxter, has been able to reveal the first step in that transformation with the appointment of Sadek to lead the initiative.
Today he said: “On behalf of town centre businesses, we offered to fund the appointment of a new Vision Chair on the clear understanding that it must be a proven urban regeneration expert who would help us to drive forward real change in Ipswich. We need someone who has done something on this scale before and who has the determination, the expertise, and the contacts to turn the Connected Town strategy into a reality. I am delighted that, in Jackie, we have found exactly that person.”
Sadek has had a varied career in regeneration and public service including time at the London Docklands Development Corporation, Tesco, CBRE, Kent Thameside, Park Royal Partnership, BURA, and more. In 2015 she visited Ipswich as the government’s special advisor on urban regeneration within the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG). During the visit she declared the concept of the Ipswich Vision Board as “a great success”.
She commented: “Real change is best delivered to places via an entrepreneurial approach alongside collaborative ways of working. The Vision Board in Ipswich has led the way on this, and it now has a hugely ambitious programme to create the Connected Town Centre. My priority as Chair will be to publish a Delivery Plan early in the new year that will put into action the positive views received from businesses and residents. After that, we need to get on with delivering and we will be judged by outcomes.”
Alongside Ipswich Central, other members of the Vision Board are Ipswich Borough Council, Suffolk County Council, Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, New Anglia LEP, the University of Suffolk, All About Ipswich and Tom Hunt MP.
View our new 5-year plan, People, Place, Purpose.