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National Specialists in Town Centre Revitalisation.

What We Do

We are:

  • Into Partnership Development
  • Into Place Activation
  • Into Place Diagnostics
  • Into Leadership Support & Training

Contact Us

What We Do

We provide a toolkit for high streets and town centres to access support, best practice and guidance for your town.

By rethinking regeneration and by harnessing public, private and community assets we help places to create strong partnerships, a compelling vision and make positive change happen. Our ‘Rethinking Regeneration Framework’, shown below, spans five key elements all of which contribute to transforming towns.

Using our framework and toolkit, we provide practical support, training and workshops for particular elements of the framework or tailored to suit the requirements of a particular town centre. We provide a methodology that can be applied to neighbouring towns within a specific borough.

Rethinking Regeneration Framework

Reg r oup Res c ope Rethink Re f ocus R e vitalise C ommunities/ Sta k e h olde r s H e a l t h c h e c k/ A udit F utu r e Role/ V ision C ommunications/ Ma r k eti n g Pl a c e/ E c o n o m y

Click the images below for more information

Regroup & Rescope




Refocus &

Making Change

How We Can Help

We provide a single place for local leaders in high streets and town centres to access support and guidance to help to develop and implement high quality, evidence based, locally led plans for your town.

We offer:

Expert and bespoke support to help develop effective networks and robust town partnerships.

Diagnostic tools and best practice to provide impartial insight into your current situation. Providing reviews of business plans and advice and a ‘critical friend’ service.

Practical support and facilitated discussions and tailored workshops to help create a relevant and engaging vision.

Communication, marketing and engagement tools for targeted audiences.

A range of proven measures to help you create a clearly defined action plan tailored to your town’s needs.

Our Experience – Altrincham, from Ghost Town to Boom Town

In 2010 the South Manchester town of Altrincham was nationally shamed as England’s top ‘ghost town’, with 30% of the centres units being empty. Confidence in the town had crashed following the 2008 recession. Investors, retailers businesses and visitors were pulling out at alarming rates. It was clear that the traditional approach to retail led regeneration was broken.

Determined to reverse Altrincham’s fortunes, we envisaged a different way forward. We drew on the town’s best assets, its people, from across all sectors and walks of life to re-think and re-imagine a future Altrincham. To draw on the town’s unique features and heritage.

We galvanised local businesses and community representatives and together we crafted a compelling vision and action plan to make change happen. This reignited confidence and encouraged smaller independent businesses to grow. Bigger operators and landlords coalesced for the first time to drive growth. By the end of 2017, the vacancy rate had fallen by 73%* with footfall and vibrancy increasing dramatically. In Altrincham the award winning market was a catalyst for change, curated by the innovative Market Operations company. However, every town has its own unique assets that can be used to harness regeneration.

In 2018 Altrincham was in the media again, this time for the right reasons, as winner of the National High Street of the Year Award.

*Beth Abbit, ‘From Ghost Town to Boom Town – How Altrincham Became the Place to Be’ Manchester Evening News (Manchester, 18th February 2018).

'What makes a great place to live? Answer: it's not a shopping plaza'

Simon Jenkins, The Guardian. 20th April 2019

‘Altrincham took hold of a ghostly centre and pondered what might draw people back to its streets. It set up market stalls and gradually colonised an old hall. It revived its economy from the bottom up, and with total success. Lettings in five years have gone from 30% vacancy to 10%. The market now employs 150 people. Altrincham is alive once more. The moral is that a town’s appeal – and thus its prosperity – lies in how we experience it, not in how much money a developer can extort from us. Start with that motive, and the answer will be none.’


Hover over the pictures to learn more about the work we have done.

We are designated Experts of the Government's High Streets Task Force, providing our knowledge and experience to support towns and cities across the country to transform their places.
“IntoPlaces provided us with excellent guidance and helpful suggestions to support the development of our town centre strategic plans and proposals. Their expertise, professionalism and commitment to wanting to achieve the best possible outcome for us was inspiring as was their enthusiasm for towns and their communities.”
Guy Darragh, Economic Development and Property Manager, Rossendale Borough Council
"The workshop session run by IntoPlaces was excellent. It did exactly what I had hoped it would and inspired our team to be place leaders and start something good in their communities."
Carole Charter, Chief Commercial Officer, Cambridge Building Society.
"We have an ambitious agenda for Ellesmere Port Town Centre and we were pleased to have the support of IntoPlaces who, as a High Street Task Force Experts, brought their experience of delivering town centre regeneration, to help inform and steer us towards the next phase of our transformation."
Sara Kettle, Economic Growth Programme Manager, Cheshire West & Chester Council.
"On IntoPlaces's support of the FBE Manchester webinar ‘GM Towns - What Next?: The whole team’s experience of creating successful town centre regeneration schemes was invaluable to us in setting up the session. Up to date insights into current trends and practical advice to support the changing roles for town centres were very well received by our members and all who attended the webinar."
Stewart Grant, Chair, FBE Manchester
"The IntoPlaces team were lovely. They ran a very good workshop. They have been through a similar process (of town transformation) to us and have a good background and experience"
Gennaro Borelli, Chairman Leighton Buzzard First

Meet Our Team

Hover over the pictures to learn more about our team

Penny Bell,

Penny has over 20 years’ experience in town centre regeneration and management working with councils, businesses, landlords and developers. She is a long-time member of the Institute of Place Management and former Chair of the North West Association of Town Centre Management. Penny has developed a range of practical tools to create successful working partnerships such as the nationally recognised Landlords Forum and projects with the education sector as well as schemes to help new businesses start up and expand. Penny is a Member of the Institute of Place Management.

Matt Colledge,

Matt created and chaired Altrincham Forward, the task force credited for revitalising the town, and recognised nationally as an exemplar of best practice. Alongside IntoPlaces, he is the Executive Director of the High Streets Task Force and one of their designated Experts. He has senior political experience as Leader of Trafford Council, Vice Chair of Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Chair of Transport for Greater Manchester. He also has considerable commercial experience gained from senior positions within the commercial world. Matt is a Fellow of the Institute of Place Management.

Sonia Cubrilo,

Sonia applies 30 years of public sector, senior management experience to create successful places, helping high street and town centres meet changing expectations. She is skilled in delivering town centre regeneration, contract negotiations, partnership development, stakeholder and community engagement using asset/strength-based ways of working. Chair of Trafford Young Enterprise, helping develop young people’s business and entrepreneurial skills. Sonia is a Fellow if the Institute of Place Management.

Contact Us

If you would like any information on how we can help you, get in touch


Alternatively, please call:

Matt Colledge, Director | 07752 667 456

Penny Bell, Director | 07798 640 463

Sonia Cubrilo, Director | 07733 363 982

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