Manchester picks Heron to replace Wyman

Becca Heron has been appointed as strategic director of growth and development at the city council. She will take up her post in October, leaving Wigan Council after three years. 

Heron will replace Louise Wyman, who stepped down as Manchester’s director of growth and development in April after less than a year. A statement the council released at the time said Wyman’s decision to resign was driven by a desire to be closer to her family in the Midlands. 

Heron was appointed as Wigan’s director of economy and skills in 2018. During her time in post, she was successful in procuring a development consortium to lead the £130m redevelopment of Wigan Galleries. 

Heron also helped to secure £16.7m of Future High Street funding for various town centre projects. 

“I have loved my time working in Wigan and the opportunity to work on some really exciting projects for the borough alongside a brilliant team,” Heron said. 

“It was a tough decision to leave, however this role is too good of an opportunity to miss, and I am excited about the next challenge in my career.” 

Heron’s appointment marks a second stint for her at Manchester City Council. Earlier in her career she was the authority’s policy and strategy officer.  

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: “There is little argument that this role is one of the most interesting and challenging in local government.  

“However, having held various high-profile roles across Greater Manchester, Becca is particularly well placed to tackle it head on.” 

Council chief executive Joanne Roney said: “I’m very pleased to have someone with passion for Manchester and determination to make a difference join the team and work alongside me in leading the delivery and ambitions set out in the Our Manchester strategy and power this city’s recovery following the pandemic.” 

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Good news for Manchester – a big loss to Wigan though.

By Martin Cranmer

I wish her well.A serious appointment, like Becca said ‘too good to turn down ‘ .Maybe I can get a few of my ideas across.Public spaces and pocket parks ,kite flying and boules on roof terraces..Archery and cooking sausages on Ardwick green!.Hey I’m serious, I always ask myself ‘why not?’.Passion is an essential attribute in consideration for this appointment. I look forward to conversation with Becca.Always remember though ,,ideas can be intellectual property and possibly profitable..

By Robert Fuller

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