Programme Structures

The remit of key elements of the new programme structures for the SCS-related activity are summarised below.  There are separate (but complementary) structures in Area-Based Regeneration and for non-SCS programmes.

Theme Management Board

The Theme Management Board supports the SCS Theme Lead in ensuring that coordinated programmes of activity are in place to deliver the objectives of the SCS Theme, alongside those of other significant initiatives. The Board’s key functions are to ensure coordination between the programmes and maintain an overview of the project portfolios, and to review resource deployment in relation to agreed priorities.


Programme Board

The Programme Board carries out the core portfolio management role, with responsibility for commissioning and managing a programme of activity to deliver a set of objectives and targets agreed with the Theme Management Board.

The Programme Board’s commissioning role will link closely with Service Planning, to review “business-as-usual” service delivery and ongoing quality improvement initiatives against these objectives in order to identify where specific programmes and projects may be needed to address gaps or shortfalls in delivery. This will include identifying and evaluating opportunities against agreed priorities and available resources, setting targets, and monitoring outcomes.

The Programme Board will also be responsible for overseeing delivery of the project portfolio, ensuring that projects deliver the agreed outputs and that appropriate resources are in place, conducting project and stage reviews at key milestones, and ongoing monitoring of progress, issues, risks and budgets. 


Project Board

Most projects will report directly to the Programme Board, with ongoing advice and assurance provided by the Programme Manager and Directorate Programme Manager. Some larger projects may require a separate Project Board to be established.

A key principle in developing these programme structures was to avoid duplicating existing groups, but instead to clarify their role and remit to help them to work more effectively and efficiently.  We have created new groups only where gaps were apparent in the existing structures and this was leading to confusion over where responsibility lay for decision-making and coordinating activity. And these programmes aren't intended to be “set in stone” – they should be kept under review and amended as necessary as new priorities and opportunities emerge. 

Relationship with the Local Strategic Partnership

Overall responsibility for delivery of the SCS lies with the Local Strategic Partnership (LSP), known as the Newcastle Partnership, and many of our programmes link with or sometimes report directly to the relevant LSP Delivery Partnership. The relationship between the Programme Boards and Delivery Partnerships varies, depending for example on whether the Partnership group has a statutory function (as for example the Children’s Trust or Safe Newcastle Partnership), and the level of resources it has. 

Area-Based Regeneration

Area-Based Regeneration (ABR) is where local planning and delivery merge and combine to create the impetus to deliver the regeneration of the city.  Working at a local level with a wide range of stakeholder groups, ABR develops community aspirations to produce meaningful plans and projects, in accordance with the Council’s strategic plans and strategies.  In this way, ABR contributes strongly to delivery of all the SCS themes.

The work of the division includes the identification of sites with development potential, the production of plans and guidance for such action and, in some cases, the management of the subsequent development and delivery process. Project development requires proactive stakeholder involvement, judicious planning of finances from a range of sources and development of appropriate delivery vehicles.  To execute this effectively, ABR encompasses multidisciplinary teams made up of professionals with different skills bases, using joint working to deliver regeneration projects across the city.

Partnership with other groups across the Council and external partners is an essential part of delivering the Area-Based Regeneration programme, in particular the joint Newcastle and Gateshead Housing Market Renewal Pathfinder Bridging NewcastleGateshead (BNG).  At the core of the ABR programme are the BNG priority areas for intervention, termed “Strategic Commissions”:

  • Walker Riverside
  • Byker Ouseburn
  • Benwell Scotswood
  • Discovery Quarter Elswick
  • North Central.

A new governance model for ABR was introduced at the end of 2009.  This clarified decision-making responsibilities and processes and established the means by which elected members and officers exercise their delegated decision-making powers in accordance with legislation and the Newcastle Charter.  The model is summarised below. 

Environment & Quality Places Theme Board

(remit as above)


ABR Programme Board

The ABR Programme Board is chaired by the Director of Area-Based Regeneration and includes senior managers in ABR and specialist advisers. It has both a commissioning role - shaping the citywide ABR programme to deliver against SCS objectives, including identifying funding opportunities, establishing priorities, setting targets and monitoring outcomes - and an assurance role, overseeing delivery of its constituent programmes.  The ABR Programme Board is responsible for the overview and management of the technical aspects of projects within the ABR programme to ensure delivery of agreed outputs to the specified cost, time and quality. This includes activity planning and resource allocation, conducting project and stage reviews at key milestones.


Area Programme Boards   
(North, East and West)

There are three Area Programme Boards, one each for the North, East and West of the city, chaired by the relevant Area Programme Director.  Each Board provides the forum for enabling officers responsible for delivery of the area’s work programme to consider in detail the monitoring of progress, issues, risks, and budgets previously agreed by the ABR Commissioning Board.  The Boards report on progress and escalate issues as and when required to the ABR Programme Board.


 Area Regeneration Steering Groups  (x5)


Area Delivery Partners Groups

There are five Area Regeneration Steering Groups, one for each of the Strategic Commissions. They are chaired by an Executive member with a resident as vice-chair, and include representatives of residents, the community, voluntary and business sectors, and ward members. 

The Steering Groups provide a forum to discuss local issues relating to the area regeneration programme. They are not a decision-making forum, but guide the programme and inform decisions made by the SCS Delivery Board and ABR Programme Board. 


Where delivery of an area based regeneration programme involves key private and/or public sector partners (for example Places for People, our Development Partner for Walker Riverside), an Area Delivery Partners Group will operate.

Chaired by the Area Programme Director, this group will deal mainly with technical and contractual issues. It advises the relevant Area Programme Board on technical and delivery issues and assists in programme planning, workstream coordination and risk management.


Ward Committees

The relevant Ward Committee(s) are chaired by a ward member and provide scrutiny of the performance of the area regeneration programme, including monitoring progress against any regeneration priorities set out in Neighbourhood Charters.

Non-SCS Programmes

Although delivering against the objectives and targets of the SCS is at the core of our work, programmes and projects will also be generated from other sources, including STEP and other service improvement initiatives.

Chief Executive’s Directorate Programme

In Adult & Culture Services, Children’s Services, and Environment & Regeneration, these non-SCS programmes are so interwoven with activities directly related to delivering against the SCS outcomes that they have been integrated into the SCS theme-based programme structures. However, in Chief Executive’s Directorate, there are activities that are much more internally focused, and these are managed by a separate Directorate Programme Board.

The Chief Executive’s Directorate Programme Board is responsible for monitoring progress of programmes and projects across the directorate’s three divisional areas:

  • Policy, Strategy & Communications
  • Finance & Resources
  • Corporate Services.

To avoid duplication of meetings, the Programme Board has been added as a standard item to the Chief Executive’s Directorate Management Team meeting on a bi-monthly basis. Divisional Directors will report progress in their programme areas to the Programme Director (the Chief Executive) through a dashboard report validated by the Divisional Management Teams and the Chief Executive’s Directorate Programme Manager.