Conference to help south London businesses bounce back from Covid

A conference in May will be hosted in Croydon to explore best practices for south London businesses disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Powered by the South London Partnership, ‘BIG’ programme which stands for Business, Innovation & Growth will take place in London South Bank University’s Croydon Campus on 11 May. 

BIG South London’s Programme Director, Paul Kirkbright explains that BIG South London wants to understand what people who live, work and study in south London really want from their towns and high streets. 

Kirkbright said: “The aim of the conference is to facilitate discussions between people from all walks of life to shape a better South London, aid post-Covid recovery and growth, and inject creativity, sustainability, and resilience into our local area.”

South London Partnership, is a sub-regional collaboration of five London boroughs: Croydon, Kingston, Merton, Richmond and Sutton.

Through guests and speakers, the event aims to bring a spectrum of ideas to explore existing townscape best practices to revitalise and reimagine south London’s towns.

According to Matthew Sims, Chief Executive Officer at the Croydon Town Centre Business Improvement District, the full support of the private, public, and voluntary sectors will shape Croydon’s future. 

Sims said: “We need to reimagine, recreate, and innovate our town centre spaces for a more sustainable future.

“Only through collaboration, partnership and a unified vision that we can all get behind will we achieve the success we so desire.”

Numerous sessions will run throughout the event, with key sessions to be:

  • Nicolas Bosetti, Centre for London: how partnerships can give communities a leading role in setting a new vision for their town centres
  • Robin Hutchinson MBE, Director at The Community Brain: ‘place-making for good’ – using place to support a more local, equitable & sustainable South London
  • Alison Baverstock, Kington School of Art: sustaining the creative self and building resilience for a creative future
  • Claire Selby, Kingston University and Grace Richards, Union of Kingston Students: the community town centre – how to support communities to play a leading role in shaping their town centres
  • Tiernan Mines, Hello Lamp Post: Helping cities better understand their citizens, looking at mundane public spaces, like lamp posts, as an opportunity for community interaction.

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