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Day 1: 16 September

The two day online conference agenda incorporated keynote sessions, panel discussions, networking, polls and Q&As.


Click here to see the day 2 agenda

Click the the session titles below for more detailed information on the topics covered.

9.00 Registration

9.20 Chair’s opening remarks and introduction to conference

Morning chair: Terrie Alafat, former chief executive, Chartered Institute of Housing

9.30 Into the unknown: navigating a new economic landscape

The UK looks set for recession. This session will explore the state of the economy, the new government’s social housing policy and the impact on the sector. What next for UK politics, the economy and the housing sector?


Professor Trevor Williams, former chief economist, Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking

Torsten Bell, chief executive, Resolution Foundation

10.30 Risk and resilience: rebooting for recovery

The world has changed and so has the sector. From the way housing services and new homes are delivered, to dealing with arrears and repairs backlogs, to housing providers’ own working environment. Meanwhile, the pre-COVID challenges are still here: navigating Brexit; funding development; the green agenda; and building safety.

This session will hear from housing leaders about what they are prioritising, the financial impact of COVID-19 to date – and stress-testing for an economy in recession


Tracey Barnes, finance director, Sovereign Housing

Mark Hattersley, chief financial officer, Clarion

Rob Griffiths, chief financial officer, Longhurst Group


11.30 Networking break

Delegates will be offered to join a Zoom chat in small groups to network and meet each other.

  • Please introduce yourself and share your thoughts on the previous two sessions.
  • You may want to share how your organisation has coped with the pandemic crisis, and what you do to stress test and mitigate the financial implications in the new post-Covid world.

12.00 Savills Research Launch: Capacity for increasing rent

Lawrence Bowles, director, Savills Residential Research

Abigail Davies, director, Savills Affordable Housing Consultancy

12.30 Networking break via Zoom

Delegates will be offered to join a Zoom chat to continue the conversation started by Savills team in the earlier session.

  • Please introduce yourself and share your thoughts on the topic.
  • Is there a capacity to increase rent?
  • What is the impact of the pandemic on rents in your organisation?

13.00 Lunch break

14.00 The regulatory landscape

Even before COVID-19, the regulatory landscape was already changing. Against the backdrop of a new housing white paper, this session will hear the priorities of the regulators whose frameworks will have a direct impact on housing governance, viability and service standards. We will be looking for your feedback via our online polling.

Fiona MacGregor, CEO, Regulator of Social Housing

Richard Blakeway, Housing Ombudsman

14.55 Valuing uncertainty

Amid uncertainty in the property market and the broader economy, UK social housing is often held up for its financial stability and the countercyclical nature of its activities. But, from exposure to market sales, to challenges including arrears, fire safety works, and changing government policy, providers are also not immune to wider headwinds.

We hear from two experts well practiced in evaluating the sector – from its physical assets to its financial - to understand the latest on housing valuations and the sector’s credit profile.


Richard Petty, Head of UK Living, JLL

Karin Erlander, Director, International Public Finance, S&P Global Ratings

15.35 Networking break

Delegates will be offered to join a Zoom chat in small groups to network and meet each other.

  • Please introduce yourself and share your thoughts on the previous two sessions.
  • You may want to share if there has been any direct impact on housing governance and service standards in your organisation.
  • Have there been any changes on housing valuations in your organisation during the pandemic crisis?

15.55 Filling the void: creative finance or simple economics?

How can HAs meet the challenge of increased investment in existing homes along with the ongoing demand for new build homes. Is it time for creative solutions and alternative finance, or does it simply come down to housing economics and grant funding?


Geeta Nanda, chief executive, Metropolitan Thames Valley

Waqar Ahmed, group finance director, L&Q

Peter Denton, chief executive, Hyde Group

Jonathan Walters, deputy chief executive, Regulator of Social Housing

16.40 Chair’s close of day 1

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