The Blackpool Pride of Place partnership which launched in 2017 is a group of people from the business, voluntary and public sectors who have come together to promote economic development and tackle local issues.
It builds on the ideas of the Inclusive Growth Commission including sectoral coalitions, civic enterprises that convene and connect, and investment in human capital. The Board includes leaders of local and national businesses, the council, the Local Enterprise Partnership and the voluntary sector.
Blackpool Pride of Place was developed and is managed by Business in the Community, the UK’s biggest organisation dedicated to responsible business, with partners including the National Lottery Community Fund, Merlin Entertainments and Blackpool Council.
Some Initiatives currently underway include: a Blackpool Responsible Business Network, a Blackpool Social Innovation Campus (creating living accommodation for motivated, skilled young people), a new tourism strategy for Blackpool, a Housing Campaign to create more affordable housing in the area, and a Business Incubator Hub supporting local entrepreneurs with business support.
- Recognise issues are interconnected and tackle them from multiple angles: the partnership recognises the importance and interdependence of its four main themes: housing and communities, health and wellbeing, employment and enterprise and education and skills. It has identified these as particular leverage points which can reinforce each other, so problems are not shifted elsewhere.
- Think long term: Blackpool Pride of Place acknowledges that change will not come quickly. The timescales they are working over are generations rather than years. In October 2018, Blackpool Pride of Place published the Blackpool 2030 town prospectus, outlining plans to build 3,000 new homes, improve employment rates for 16-25 year-olds through a focus on health and wellbeing, and boost national perceptions of the resort as somewhere to invest and build businesses.
- Build expertise: Those involved in Blackpool Pride of Place recognise that they do not have all the answers, and that solutions will often come from the local people. They have been investing in ways for local people’s voices to be heard, including convening a steering group of local people, hosted at a youth club funded by the businesses involved in the partnership.
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This case study is part of our framework for place-based funding.