Professor Ian Wray

Visiting Fellow

Ian Wray


Ian Wray is Honorary Professor and Fellow at the Heseltine Institute, and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. He is a policy advisor and steering group member for UK2070, the independent review of UK regional policy chaired by Lord Kerslake; Vice Chair of World Heritage UK; and a member of the editorial board for the journal Built Environment. His research interests centre on big infrastructure plans, regional development, music, creativity and cities, and world heritage. He has acted as advisor to several bodies, including the North West Business Leadership Team.

He is the author of ‘Great British Plans - Who Made Them and How They Worked’ (2016) and ‘No Little Plans: How Government Built America’s Wealth and Infrastructure’ (2019) as well as numerous papers. He has worked as journalist, especially for the Architects Journal and Management Today.

He is a former trustee of the Town and Country Planning Association where he chaired TCPA’s Urban Policy Group, and served as Chief Planner, Northwest Development Agency, 2000-2010, with responsibility for transport, planning and housing.

With the late Professor Sir Peter Hall, he set out the first proposal for what has subsequently come to be known as Northern Powerhouse Rail. Working with consultant Jim Steer he has reviewed high speed rail policy for the North of England, and recently assessed the Government’s Integrated Rail Plan for UK2070.

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