Improve awareness, local perceptions and engagement in the consultation process and attract new residents to Walker Riverside. The 15 year regeneration programme is delivering 2000 homes alongside improvements to the local landscape, transport system and a new town centre to the East End of Newcastle. The joint venture between Places for People, Newcastle City Council and Bridging Newcastle Gateshead is one of the largest regeneration programmes in the country.
Our strategy was to develop a strong sense of community spirit which in turn would create a groundswell of positivity towards the regeneration. This was reflected in one core umbrella brand, ‘HOW’ (Heart of Walker). A stakeholder media briefing programme ensured the messages around the development were always inclusive and accessible, while media collateral produced and launched at an exclusive media event on site which controlled messaging and encouraged positive features around the development.
- The campaign shifted the negative opinions that were not supportive of the regeneration to positive ones where people were embracing the change.
- Over 1,200 people attended the launch consultation event in contrast to the handfuls who attended previous consultation events. In total almost 1,700 people attended the events as a whole with opinions gathered for 70% of them.
- The consultation events were heralded as a success by key stakeholders and were used as an exemplar of best practice for other Pathfinder organisations throughout the country.
- The two core regional daily newspapers, Evening Chronicle and The Journal covered the story positively with lead articles. Media coverage alone provided a return on in investment of 3:1 (equivalent advertising cost).
- This campaign won a Gold CIPR award for Best Community Relations.