Kingston Council has announced Matthew Essex as its new Executive Director, Place.

Matthew will lead an ambitious heritage-led regeneration and renewal programme and drive forward plans to deliver new, highly sustainable homes across the borough, including the first new council homes to be built for decades. Matthew will join Kingston in March from the London Borough of Redbridge, where he was Corporate Director for Regeneration and Culture.

Speaking about his appointment, he said: “I am very excited to be joining Kingston to support the delivery of an ambitious regeneration programme which seeks to build upon the unique strengths of the borough and secure genuine benefits for residents and businesses. The council has made some clear commitments to exciting projects around housing, leisure and local services and facilities, and I’m looking forward to getting to working across the council and with its partners to make those commitments a reality.”

Matthew has worked in regeneration for more than 20 years in a range of public, private and not for profit organisations in and around London. Having started in economic development, his roles have included regeneration, property, planning and capital projects. He has led a range of projects, including the development of High House Production Park and creating a new town centre in Purfleet, the delivery of commercial and affordable housing and Redbridge’s work to revitalise the Ilford town centre.

Matthew also led on several corporate priorities, including the development of community hubs, which will become the future model of council service delivery and completely reshape its relationship with local communities and the third sector.

Chief Executive of Kingston Council Ian Thomas CBE said he was thrilled to welcome Matthew. “This is a really exciting time to be joining us here in Kingston. We are delivering bold and innovative change to our borough, and the role of Executive Director of Place sits at the very heart of that work.

“We are immensely proud of our ambitious programme of heritage-led regeneration and renewal. It places Kingston’s unique history at the centre of our efforts to provide the communities, economy and homes local people need and value, as well as new high-quality jobs and state of the art sustainable provision such as schools, dementia care and leisure facilities. I’m delighted to be welcoming Matthew to lead on this transformational programme of work.”


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