Property consultant winds down ‘unnecessary’ subsidiary Tribal Urban Futures only six months after launch

Public sector consultant Tribal Group has scrapped its regeneration arm half a year after setting it up.

The giant consultancy, which acts as a one-stop shop for public sector property needs, has wound up Tribal Urban Futures.

This was set up in March to tackle work generated by the government’s sustainable communities plan.

David Jenkins, a director at Tribal Property Services, said the firm had decided against continuing with the Urban Futures group but was still committed to regeneration work.

He said: “Tribal Urban Futures was a specific vehicle for a specific purpose. It was there as a bit of a badge. But as we went forward we decided that we didn’t need it.”

Jenkins said Tribal’s regeneration work would now be carried out by other parts of the group. Tribal’s other branches include health, education, local government and housing, and central government.

It was a specific vehicle for a specific purpose. It was there as a bit of a badge

David Jenkins, Tribal Property Services

The company had been headed by Pete Wilson, an architect and specialist in community and housing-led regeneration. Wilson played a leading role in the Greenwich Millennium Village and delivered the masterplan for South Kilburn New Deal for Communities.

Wilson has left the Tribal Group, and could not be reached for comment.

Since being formed five years ago by Henry Pitman, the Tribal Group has achieved a turnover of nearly £250m and grown to employ more than 2000 people across 60 offices nationwide. The group has acquired more than 40 companies since March 2000.

Tribal’s volte-face comes at an awkward time for the government, whose sustainable communities plan is being revamped by communities minister David Miliband.

The latest ODPM figures show that housing starts and completions in England are slowing despite the aim of the communities plan to increase supply. During the third quarter of this year, housing starts totalled 45,292, a 1% decrease on a year earlier, and completions totalled 37,800, a 5% decrease on a year earlier.