Regenerating communities

Our Regeneration Team delivers major ‘new use’ projects for historic places of worship.

We’re an award-winning team with experience across community regeneration, planning and social enterprise, historic conservation, site interpretation and project management. We share our skills with local people, communities and businesses to deliver extraordinary projects. 

We've achieved 14 awards over 3 projects including 6 Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors awards for Community Benefit, Building Conservation and Project of the Year (All Souls Bolton).


Click here to see how we can help you with your heritage regeneration projects, or scroll down to view past projects. Watch our film and read our publication about the impact of our work during 2018-2020 and our consultancy service.

Regeneration Impact Report 2018-2020
Regeneration Impact Report 2018-2020


Regeneration Consultantcy Services

Regeneration Consultancy Services


  • Our approach to regeneration

    Our Regeneration Taskforce was set up specifically to focus on major projects which require a blend of regeneration expertise and community skills to succeed. We find, nurture and develop sustainable, long term new uses for some of our finest historic buildings, working in partnership with community groups, charities, social enterprises, friends groups, businesses and entrepreneurs. Read more...

  • Regeneration Consultancy Service

    We regularly work on partnership projects with external organisations, including vulnerable churches still in use by congregations. Click here to find out more about what we can offer.

  • Project toolkits

    To support volunteers and community groups seeking to bring new life to heritage buildings we've put together a series of toolkits that give insight into the regeneration process and can support the development of your own regeneration building projects. Click here to find out more.

  • Meet the regeneration team

    Meet the Regeneration Team

    We are a small creative team with experience across a range of sectors, including community regeneration, planning, social enterprise, historic conservation, site interpretation, and project management. We bring our skills together to deliver award-winning projects with people we work with.

    • Isabel Assaly

      Head of Regeneration and Consultancy

      Isabel joined The Churches Conservation Trust in 2011 and works in the award-winning Regeneration Team as Head of Regeneration and Consultancy. Currently managing a portfolio of projects for the Trust and external groups, Isabel works in partnership with local organisations and individuals to deliver meaningful and long-lasting benefits to local communities through adapting historic churches. Isabel also manages the CCT's European consultancy service.  

      Prior to the Trust, Isabel worked for the British Museum and for Natural England, the government adviser for the natural environment.

      Isabel is a qualified PRINCE 2 project manager and holds a RIBA Certificate in construction project management and an MSc in the Built Environment (Sustainable Heritage) from University College London.

      Image: Maria Lundström

    • Hannah Parham

      Regeneration Manager

      Hannah manages projects to revitalise and sustain historic church buildings at risk. She is working on the National Lottery Heritage-funded Old Black Lion in Northampton. The Old Black Lion is a Grade II-listed pub, which will be repaired and refurbished so that it can support community activities and conservation work at the neighbouring 12th-century Church of St Peter, listed at Grade I. She is also part of the team for St John’s Lancaster, a Grade II*-listed, 18th-century church in the city centre. 

      Before joining the Churches Conservation Trust in 2020, Hannah led the Historic Buildings Consultancy team at Donald Insall Associates, an architectural practice which specialises in the conservation and renewal of historic buildings and places. Here she worked with owners and managers of listed buildings – including the Parliamentary Estate, the Crown Estate, private developers, universities and cultural and heritage organisations – to develop sensitive proposals for change. Hannah’s career began at English Heritage (now Historic England) where she was an advisor to Government on the listing of buildings in London and the South East.

      Hannah is on the National Trust's Historic Environment Advisory Group and Design Advice Forum, and the Southern Buildings Committee of the Victorian Society. She has degrees in history and architectural history, and is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London.

    • Michael Booth

      Find A Use Manchester (FAUM) Project Manager

      Michael manages the FAUM project having joined CCT in 2021. FAUM is a three-year initiative designed to examine how the mechanisms for disposal of Grade II and II* listed churches can be improved, made more responsive to local communities and become genuine partnerships.  Michael has experience in similar projects having recently advised his local parish in Saddleworth and Dumfries Building Preservation Trust over the re-purposing of Rosefield Mills.

      Michael is a chartered surveyor with over 30 years’ experience in property consultancy, most of which was spent advising universities, colleges and other public sector bodies about the strategic management of their estates. He holds masters degrees in business administration and building conservation and has most recently run his own architectural design practice. Until recently, Michael was a non-executive director of the diocese of Leeds charitable trustee.

      Image: David Howcroft

    • Amanda Gerry

      Lead Regeneration Officer

      Amanda was previoulsy the Development Officer for The Canny Space, a transformational re-use project at Holy Trinity Church in Sunderland. 

      Amanda is an experienced project manager with over 25 years specialising in sustainable development and the not-for-profit sector. Having started her career in the military, she has held a number of project management roles in both the public and voluntary sectors across the North East.

      Amanda grew up in Somerset but has lived in the North East for the past 30 years. Amanda holds a certificate in both Project Management and Management Resilience and has a Prince Foundation certificate (online) having recently participated in the Emerging Leaders workshop with the Clore Foundation. She is passionate about community research, extending her CPD at Edinburgh University in research with children / young people.

      Amanda is a member of The Historic Religious Buildings Alliance and is a City of Sunderland Cultural Ambassador promoting good practice, partnership working, community development and heritage regeneration across the North East. She sits on a number of boards including the Sunderland Cultural Partnership, Heritage Action Zone, Cultural Learning Group, and represents the CCT at the AHRC funded ‘Mapping Contemporary Art in the Heritage Experience’ research project.

    • Elanor Johnson

      Regeneration Officer

      Elanor joined the Regeneration Team in January 2020, working across a number of projects with a particular focus on supporting heritage skills training and engagement at Holy Trinity, Sunderland and St Swithun’s, Worcester.   

      An archaeologist by background, Elanor has worked in heritage engagement and learning for twenty years, working on diverse sites including prehistoric landscapes, twentieth century coastal defences, and a medieval castle. Her passion is for connecting people with place by creating sustainable futures for historic buildings that enhance local community life and provide opportunities for all to volunteer, learn and develop. 

      Elanor joins us from Newcastle Diocese, where she led the Rural Churches for Everyone in Northumberland project. Prior to that she worked on the transformation of Hylton Castle Sunderland from roofless ruin to community heritage hub. Elanor led the award-winning Heritage Skills in Education project for North of England Civic Trust, as well as working on consultancy-based commissions for the public and community sectors in the North East. 

      Elanor studied archaeology at Newcastle University before postgraduate study at the University of Nottingham. She is an experienced project and programme manager with expertise in training, skills development and community engagement. 

      Image: Mike Veitch

    • Jake Millar

      Regeneration Officer

      Jake joined the Churches Conservation Trust’s Regeneration Team in January 2020, where he has been supporting the re-development of St Peters church in Sudbury, a beautiful Grade I listed building which has stood at the heart of the town since the 14th century. Jake also helps to deliver and facilitate a number of consultancy services, which are provided by the team to a growing number of clients.

      Before joining the Trust Jake worked for the British Library, where he delivered a series of UK-wide consultations before co-authoring a research paper on digital transformations for UK public libraries. Jake also has experience of working on community projects, particularly concerning site interpretation and stakeholder engagement. This comes from his time working in partnership with the Mayflower 400 commemorative program, which aims to support learning and increase visitor numbers within heritage sites.

      Jake holds an MA in Public History from the University of Essex, a qualification in Agile Project Management from the Scrum Alliance, and has completed a course with the Chartered Institute of Building on project management and supervision within historic and traditional buildings.

    • Allison Burke

      Development Officer, Sudbury

      Allison joined the Trust in October 2018, to work as Development Officer on the National Lottery Heritage Fund supported ‘Built For Exchange’ regeneration project at St Peter’s Sudbury.  Coming from a background in senior management in the private sector, Allison has 15 years’ experience in supporting corporate governance and compliance, HR management, and contributing to both long and short term organisational strategy.  As a former trustee of the ‘Friends of St Peter Sudbury’ charity, she is passionate about making heritage accessible to all, using a creative approach to finding alternative uses for heritage buildings, and encouraging positive community engagement as a priority.  Allison studied Humanities with the Open University,  has undertaken training with the Institute of Leadership and Management, and has recently completed the Clore Social Leadership ‘Discover’ programme.  She has been a Chair of Governors (local Authority) for a school in Essex and currently sits on Babergh & Mid Suffolk Council’s ‘Sudbury Vision Officer Delivery Group’ as part of the St Peter’s project.


    • Amelia Evans

      Regeneration Projects Assistant

      Amelia joined the Regeneration team in April 2017 after gaining administration and coordination experience for two years in the Trust’s Resources team. Prior to this, Amelia was Museum Resources Officer at Windsor & Royal Borough Museum working closely with the community and developing her interpretation skills. Amelia volunteered in a number of roles, such as Visitor Services Volunteer at the Victoria & Albert Museum and Curatorial Volunteer at Hackney Museum before starting at the Trust. Amelia has a MA in International Heritage Management from Ironbridge International Institute for Cultural Heritage connected to the University of Birmingham.