Harrison has not disclosed future plans for after he steps down, but recruitment for a new CEO will begin imminently

Matt Harrison has announced that he will be standing down as the chief executive of Manchester-based housing association Great Places Housing Group after eleven years in post.


Great Places CEO Matt Harrison to stand down in July this year

Harrison joined Great Places in 1993, and before appointed as chief executive in 2013, he was executive director of development at Great Places for 20 years. 

Harrison plans to remain in his position as CEO until the end of June 2024. Great Places has said that it will begin the process of recruiting a new CEO in the next few days.

Since Harrison took over as CEO, he has overseen the growth of Great Places, which now owns and manages over 25,500 homes and had a turnover of £168m in 2022/23.

>> See also: Great Places increases homes output by 16%

>> See also: Great Places build target ‘at risk’ due to delays

He has also overseen the creation of Terra Nova, an in-house construction company and the delivery of thousands of homes across all tenures, including through joint ventures with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Manchester and Sheffield-based developers Hive Homes and Forge New Homes.

Harrison also presided over the merger with Cheadle-based housing association Equity Housing, which became a part of Great Places Housing Group in April 2020.

Harrison has not indicated what his future plans are after he steps down in June this year.

In October 2022, Great Places started talks with Mosscare St Vincent’s (MSV) about merging. In September last year, Great Places announced that it would not be proceeding with the potential merger due to the current “challenging environment”.

Harrison is currently chair of the South Yorkshire Housing Partnership and the South Yorkshire Housing Association and a board member for This City (Manchester City Council’s housing development company). He also sits on the board of the South Yorkshire housing provider joint venture, Forge New Homes.

Harrison has chaired the Greater Manchester housing Provider joint venture, Hive Homes and has been a director of the Sheffield Local Housing Company. He has also been involved with a Local Strategic Partnership, which brings together local statutory, community and private sectors to address local problems, allocate funding and discuss strategies and initiatives. In addition, he has been a PFI Company board nember and has supported the National Housing Federation in a variety of ways.

Harrison said: “Great Places is a financially strong and resilient organisation with a skilled executive team which we intend to boost by recruiting a new Chief Property Officer shortly. We are well-placed to take on the challenges facing the sector now and into the future, and will set out a new Corporate Plan shortly that will outline the priorities for Great Places over the next 3 years.”