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 16 awards over 4 projects including 6 Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors awards for Community Benefit, Building Conservation and Project of the Year (All Souls Bolton).

We were recently awarded the Museums + Heritage Award 2022, Conservation Project of the Year for our Major Project, 1719. We received the 2022 Constructing Excellence in the Northeast Award in the category of Best Conservation and Regeneration Project for 1719. 1719 has been shortlisted for the Brick Awards 2022.

‘The judges were impressed by this hugely complex and challenging project. It had a team of more than 200 people, who worked to deliver conservation-led restoration, which was sensitively executed with a big heart and deep and broad community engagement’. Museums + Heritage Awards 2022


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 CCT 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.

    • Amanda Gerry

      Lead Regeneration Officer

      Amanda was previoulsy the Development Officer for 1719, 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.

    • Amanda Brocklehurst

      Regeneration Officer

      Amanda joined CCT’s Regeneration Team in January 2022, with the specific remit of supporting the delivery and continued expansion of the team’s heritage consultancy services.

      Amanda has a strong track record in the heritage sector, having spent much of her career working in the UK’s pre-eminent planning and development consultancy, before establishing her own heritage consultancy. During this time, she has managed and successfully delivered projects for a range of clients including central government, local authorities, major landowners such as universities and NHS Trusts, Building Preservation Trusts and community groups. Her experience includes advising on change to the historic environment and working with clients to develop sensitive development proposals. Amanda has experience in the submission and management of planning and listed building consent applications, the preparation of Heritage Impact Assessments and Statements of Significance, Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plan work. Amanda’s experience also includes community-led regeneration and master planning, and community and stakeholder engagement.

      Amanda holds an IHBC recognised MA in Conservation Studies (Historic Buildings) from York University. She is also a chartered Town Planner (MRTPI), with a BA (Hons) Degree and post-graduate Diploma in Town Planning. She has a particular interest in heritage at risk, and was awarded the York Consortium for Conservation and Craftsmanship’s Annual Medal in 2017, for her contribution in this field.

    • 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

    • Nick Patrick

      Regeneration Officer

      Nick joined CCT in January 2022 and works, primarily, across the South & East. Passionate about the positive impact heritage can have on people and places, he is skilled in: project development & management, public engagement and building partnerships.  

      Before joining the CCT, Nick spent 30 years working as a freelance producer for BBC Radio and was responsible for Radio 4’s long-running Making History series, the environment programme Home Planet and award-winning episodes of the Archive Hour. In 2010, he led on the formation of a social enterprise based in East Anglia which has delivered a number of heritage activity projects funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. More recently, this work has been focussed on using heritage to improve physical and mental wellbeing.