Outer London Fund Evaluation

Question: What are the lessons that can be learned from the Mayor of London’s placemaking investments and how are they improving the everyday lives of Londoners?

The Outer London Fund (OLF) was a £50m fund launched by the Mayor of London in 2011 to strengthen the vibrancy and growth of outer London’s high streets. Alongside the Mayor’s Regeneration Fund (also evaluated by Regeneris), London Regeneration Fund and High Street Fund, OLF was one of the defining interventions of the Boris Johnson mayoralty and needed a strong and independent assessment of its achievements and impact.

Solution: capacity building for self-evaluation

Regeneris led a rolling evaluation of the OLF. We supported each of the participating boroughs to build their capacity for self-evaluation. Our team designed a range of tools and provided group and one-to-one briefings to upskill borough officers to ensure that they had capacity to produce the robust monitoring information needed. Each borough delivered its own self-evaluation which Regeneris then moderated and aggregated.

Impact: intelligence-led approaches to place making

Our evaluation provided a new benchmark for the evaluation of publicly-funded place making projects in London. In addition, the capacity building support in the GLA and borough’s helped provide a more self-sufficient and enlightened approach to measuring the impact of these projects. Our work led to a new outcomes and outputs framework for GLA projects and Regeneris was asked to repeat the process for the Mayor’s Regeneration Fund evaluation.

In 2015 Regeneris completed an independent evaluation of the Mayor’s Outer London Fund programme on behalf of the Greater London Authority Regeneration Unit. This was the first large scale regeneration programme we had delivered to completion, and so it was extremely important that an independent evaluation be conducted to assess which strategies had had the biggest impact, and where things needed to be done differently in future. Regeneris provided us with a very strong piece of work which did an excellent job at capturing the numerous successes of the programme, particularly the strategic legacy of an ongoing commitment to high streets and the ongoing town centre investment of London Boroughs. The learning captured through their commission has helped shape and inform our future work and justify additional funding being allocated to new programmes. Furthermore, Chris and his team were extremely pleasant and professional to engage with at all times, and we have since appointed them to conduct a two-stage evaluation of the Mayor’s Regeneration Fund, one of our largest and most important programmes.
– Matthew Kleebauer


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