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News - 17/07/2015

New Award explores the opportunities of city devolution

The move towards greater devolution of power, as illustrated by the Government’s commitment to creating a ‘Northern Powerhouse’, represents an incredible opportunity for the property industry to play a central role in shaping the future of the UK. This is the context for the inaugural Lambert Smith Hampton Enterprise Award, which launches today.

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The question that the Award will address is:

“The new Government is planning further devolution, aiming to empower local communities to drive growth, job creation and regeneration. How can innovative thinking from the property industry help make devolved government a success?”

The deliberately open brief has been designed to encourage a wide range of interpretations from different specialisms, from Architecture to planning, finance and economic policy. Potential approaches could include:

  • How could wider local powers support job creation and sustainable growth?
  • How could devolution support investment in infrastructure?
  • How could greater local autonomy ease pressure on local housing markets?

Prize fund of £15,000

The Award, which has a total prize fund of £15,000, will be judged by a panel of leading experts from across the industry. Bringing together a range of different specialisms, backgrounds and regional experience that reflects LSH’s own integrated approach, the panel of expert judges includes:

  • Melanie Leech: Chief Executive, British Property Federation
  • Sir Edward Lister: Chief of staff and Deputy Mayor, Greater London Authority
  • Tom Bloxham MBE: Founder of urban renewal property development company Urban Splash
  • Waheed Nazir: Director of Planning & Regeneration, Birmingham City Council
  • Liz Hamson: Editor, Property Week
  • Ezra Nahome: CEO of Lambert Smith Hampton

Expert judging panel

The Award judging panel will be chaired by Ezra Nahome, CEO of Lambert Smith Hampton, who commented: “Devolution will be a major political change, with a far-reaching practical impact on property. The Lambert Smith Hampton Enterprise Award aims to stimulate creative thinking about the implications of greater local powers across the industry, capture the imagination around the opportunities devolution could offer and celebrate the most enterprising ideas. I’m really looking forward to seeing the entries and showcasing the most innovative ideas from across our industry.”

The Award is open to all, with entries welcome from individuals, teams or consortia. LSH encourages a range of approaches from different specialisms and professional backgrounds, as well as submissions from students who represent the next generation of our industry.

Deadline for entries is Wednesday 30th September at 23.59hrs.

Chief Executive of the British Property Federation, and Award judge, Melanie Leech comments: “The devolutionary agenda is an exciting one, and we will be working closely with government over the coming months and years to ensure that it is brought forward in a way that benefits the real estate industry. I am looking forward to seeing the innovative thoughts and ideas that this initiative will produce.”


Sir Edward Lister, Chief of Staff and Deputy Mayor, Policy and Planning and judge on the Award panel comments: “London proves that strong local Government can have a huge impact in driving growth and prosperity. The prospect of further devolution could be a great opportunity for communities around the country, but to be successful we will need to think creatively about delivery. That’s why this Award is such an exciting initiative.”

Encouraging collaboration and innovation

Speaking about the Lambert Smith Hampton Enterprise Award, judge Tom Bloxham MBE said: “It is incredibly exciting to see my home town of Manchester starting to really grasp the opportunity of greater local autonomy. To build further on this early success will require collaboration between Government, planners, architects, financiers and most importantly local people. It is great to be involved in the LSH Enterprise Award because it encourages that collaboration and innovation.

Waheed Nazir, Director of Planning & Regeneration at Birmingham City Council and an Award judge, comments: “I can’t think of anything that would have a greater impact on me and my department than further devolution to British cities. We always want to work collaboratively with partners in Birmingham: the Award is a great way to invite ideas on how best to take advantage of possible new powers even before the changes come into place.”

Liz Hamson, Editor of Property Week, said: “It will be extremely interesting to follow how the Government’s commitment to granting greater local powers opens up opportunities for the property industry to respond with creativity and forward-thinking. Progressive and challenging projects such as the LSH Enterprise Award will position the industry as central to the future success of devolution.

For further information on the Enterprise Award, view all terms and conditions and to submit an entry, please visit

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