Public expenditure as a common good

Breakout session 2 – 3.15pm

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Public sector spending is perhaps the best known of the tools of community wealth building. But the impact of that spending goes far beyond technical tinkering, social value clauses or “nice to haves”. Instead it can harbour a deep systemic change that rewires the local economy to place its ownership more firmly in the hands of communities. This session will explore how we move beyond a siloed approach to procurement and commissioning and into one which engages whole institutions in a shared mission to create radical and lasting change.


John Heneghan is an Associate Director at CLES. He has significant experience working in political and social policy environments. Prior to joining CLES, John’s work spanned politics and civic society, with extensive local government experience, where he championed innovation and radical change toward solutions which are value-led, empathic and responsive to peoples’ real lived experiences.

Huw Thomas is the Director of Finance for Hywel Dda University Health Board. In his early career, Huw worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in London, Bristol and Cardiff. Initially, his clients were within the banking sector before he specialised in NHS, local authority and third sector clients. He worked for the NHS in England before moving back to Wales to work for Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board. He is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland, and served on their Governing Council. He has also been a trustee of the Healthcare Financial Management Association, and served as the chair for their Wales branch. He currently chairs the NHS Wales Directors of Finance forum.

Ellen Petts is the Managing Director of Greenstream Flooring CIC. Greenstream Flooring CIC are an innovative long-term circular-economy social enterprise providing circular options in relation to flooring. Their mission is to maximize the community benefit of the re-use and sales of flooring, providing a national waste/resource collection of commercial carpet tiles during refurbishments and construction phases. Prior to setting up Greenstream Flooring CIC, Ellen spent ten years in campaign work in waste awareness for local and national government.