At Urban Partners our aim is to make King’s Cross, Euston and St Pancras a better place to live, work and do business. We do this by focusing on 3 key areas: Benefiting our Employees, Representing our Businesses and Engaging the Next Generation.
Throughout the year, we run a number of projects to ensure we deliver on these goals. However, our ongoing ‘Hero’ projects, the projects we will dedicate most time and effort to, are as follows:
1) The Wellbeing Walk
This is the alternative walking route we launched in 2015 that allows people in the area to avoid the high levels of pollution on Euston Road. The Wellbeing Walk, which runs between St Pancras International Station and Euston Station (via Somerstown) has 50% less pollution than the traditional route, and was nominated for an excellence in cycling and walking award at the London Transport Awards in 2016. Last year, we secured temporary extension of the planning permission for signage, celebrated the first anniversary of the walk with a well-attended member event (with speakers from Camden Council and Transport for London) and secured funding with the support of the Cross River Partnership through its Clean Air Better Business programme. In 2018 we worked to successfully secure a long term legacy for the project. In 2019 we will be appointing a design specialist to develop concepts for improved signage along the route and we will be promoting the Wellbeing Walk as a pilot which other areas of London could adopt. Read more about it here.
2) The Homework Club
Research had shown many young people in our area did not have a quiet place at home to study. In response to this, we launched an innovative pilot scheme working with Eurostar to provide young people with an inspiring place to do their homework after school. The pilot was a huge success and has since expanded to also include LNER and Springer Nature. In addition to providing a quiet space, volunteers from member businesses have also provided tuition to help students with a wide array of subjects include French, German, History, Maths, Physics and Politics. In November 2018, The Homework Club secured the Highly Commended status for the Best CSR Initiative at the CorpComms Awards, a brilliant achievement for all of those involved. To read more about the award click here. To read more about Homework Club here.
3) Destination Next – Ideas for a Sustainable, Safe and Socially Inclusive Future
Destination Next, the first Urban Partners sustainable conference was an enthralling day full of insight and inspiration on the social and environmental sustainability of the King’s Cross, Euston and St Pancras area, as well as London’s wider community. The event took place on Friday 16 November and was held at Kings Place. The half-day event was packed with informative talks and presentations from notable keynote speakers, and engaging panel talks with experts from businesses in the area. The key theme of the conference was to establish how the extraordinary changes in the King’s Cross, Euston and St Pancras area have impacted on the local environment and communities, with special reference given to its effects on the young people in its various local communities who have witnessed these rapid changes. To read more about Destination Next click here.
Rising homelessness within our basin initiated one of our Hero Projects to focus on how Urban Partners can assist with the rising levels of homelessness. We work in cooperation with Somers Town Community Centre to hold regular meetings, projects and events to raise awareness, fundraise and facilitate further collaborations. One major initiative we work towards is to educate employees in the area to follow the best practice to assist rough sleepers. This includes passing on information of the correct contacts for homeless people to known charities in the area and places they can receive assistance. If you would like to attend our homelessness meetings or find out more about activities, then please get in contact via [email protected] If you would like to find out more about homelessness charities within our basin, please click here.
5) Safety Net
Safety Net is a programme that helps teachers, parents and carers to keep children and young people safe online, and with the digital world changing constantly it is imperative that protective measures are put in place. Safety Net covers a broad spectrum of information, including searching the internet, social media, cyber bulling, hacking and scams, online games and privacy settings. Urban Partners has promoted and supported the rollout of the Safety Net programme to 18 schools across Camden and Islington, with the scope to potentially increase this number. This has also been successfully linked to the Guardian News Wise Programme, a cross-curricular news project from the Guardian Foundation, National Literacy Trust and PSHE Association. To read more about Safety Net click here.