Community Engagement

Leaving a community legacy at London Bridge station

Leaving a community legacy at London Bridge station

Being on site for several years during the London Bridge Station Redevelopment gave the project a wonderful opportunity to develop long term meaningful relationships with the local community to leave a real lasting legacy. To do this, the project identified and understood the community’s needs from the very outset. The redevelopment took place in an a busy urban environment with many neighbours in an area of high unemployment and in a place that lacked of green spaces – this gave the project clear needs to focus on and these were then structured around three distinct programmes:

  • Community engagement
  • School and college outreach
  • Local supply chain opportunities.

To demonstrate its commitment to these the project employed a full time dedicated Community Relations Manager and a Projects Skills Coordinator to lead these and to provide a dedicated interface.

Our community engagement agenda was also supported from the very top of the organisation which set social responsibility as a core value that led a project team who actively sought and engaged with the community at all levels at all times.

Achievements

Thanks to a well-structured programme and top level commitment and support, the project is proud to report that we:

  • Delivered over 150 community engagements, including 29 events with an educational focus and eight events in the local neighbourhood
  • Provided 48 students the opportunity to gain experience in the reality of working life with some very positive feedback, delivering exposure about career opportunities within construction and the rail industry
  • Provided training to over 200 unemployed local residents of which 62 went on to be employed by the project
  • Provided 61 apprenticeships
  • Donated nearly £90,000 to a variety of charitable causes
  • Awarded work to 11 SME’s to provide tools, materials and office fit-out for the project for contracts in excess of £6million
  • Developed a long term relationship with a local school which provided many opportunities to provide a positive impact via Health, Safety and Environment engagement programmes, reading and maths mentoring, STEM activities, parent workshops and donations of office furniture and gardening equipment.

Strong and consistent leadership around social value, advocating its value and requiring participation, particularly from the Programme Directors, has been the key to our success in delivering a positive social impact to leave a social legacy beyond project completion.

Internally, work around social value has developed the skills of our employees and made them feel more engaged and has attracted and retained a greater diversity of talent than most rail projects, which is good for our industry, as it indicates we are drawing from the full pool of talent and helps us to bridge the talent and skills gap facing our sector.

London Bridge Opening Celebrations

Children from local Primary schools were invited to join the celebrations when London Bridge station officially opened in May 2018, with activities including a treasure hunt around the station.