15 September 2023 | Collaboration | Our Work

Strictly Highways 2023 draft programme announced

The Local Council Roads Innovation Group (LCRIG) is excited to announce the draft event programme for this year’s Strictly Highways, with delegates set to hear insights across four key focus areas aligning to LCRIG’s key activities and initiatives – collaboration, innovation, skills and net zero.

There has been a great level of interest in the event once again this year with sponsorship and exhibitor spaces booking up in record time and LCRIG has received a high volume of requests for speaker slots. The programme has been carefully compiled following consultation with our members and based on the feedback received from delegates that attended last year’s event.

This year’s theme is Collaboratively Speaking: Sharing solutions to meet local road demands and the programme features a wide range of presentations and interactive sessions set to share knowledge, spark debate and encourage collaboration.

Strictly Highways is LCRIG’s flagship event and brings together the whole highways community, including councils, the Department for Transport (DfT), academia, industry associations, the supply chain and media. The event enables everyone to learn about new innovation and technology, share experiences, receive updates from the DfT and showcases the industry associations.

The event is taking place at Winter Gardens, Blackpool from 3rd to 5th October 2023 and will incorporate the DfT Special Recognition Awards on the evening of 4th October.

Day 1

Day 1 of the event will open with a welcome message from Councillor Paula Burdess, Portfolio Holder at Blackpool Council.

Paula will be followed by John Blackledge, Director of Community and Environments Services at Blackpool Council who will provide an update on the transformation that is happening on Blackpool’s road network.

The morning sessions will centre around collaboration, with the first panel session of the event focussing on the topic of social value. The debate follows on from a recent round table and webinar delivered by LCRIG in association with Colas, who will also take part in the session. The panel debate will look at how social value can be ‘rebooted’, 10 years on from the introduction of the social value act.

LCRIG is delighted to be welcoming Frank Lee, CEO of the Institute of Collaborative Working (ICW) who will take part in the morning session on the importance of working collaboratively in and across the supply chain. Delegates will also hear from representatives at UKRLG.

After lunch, the focus will turn to innovation, with a second interactive panel session that will look at what is holding innovation back in the UK. The audience will also hear from LCRIG’s Regional Working Group Chairs about how the groups are helping councils.

Strictly Highways awards ceremony

It doesn’t end there. After an action packed day one programme, delegates will return to the ballroom in the evening to enjoy a glittering awards ceremony where the winners of this year’s coveted DfT Special Recognition awards will be revealed.


Day 2

Day 2 will commence with a panel session centred around skills, which proved a popular topic at this year’s Innovation Festival and delegates will hear from young people across the highways community, working in both the public and private sector.

The first session will be chaired by LCRIG’s Kerry Winstanley, and joining Kerry will be a familiar face to those that attended the Innovation Festival. Charlie Dunkerley from East Riding of Yorkshire Council will take to the stage once again alongside other panellists to look at the next generation in highways.

Delegates will also hear from our Main Conference Partner, Kiely Group who will discuss how increasing employment opportunities can help deliver better results for customers.

After lunch, delegates will hear updates from representatives at the DfT and National Highways.

Strictly Highways 2023 will conclude with a panel session that will discuss the importance of Road Condition Index (RCI) change and delegates will have the opportunity to hear from key stakeholders in the process.

View the draft event programme here.

Find out more about the event here.


Image source LCRIG – Some of the winners from Strictly Highways 2022.