estate in Northampton, a restored East London park, a thriving centre
for disabled people in the West Midlands and a regeneration project
on a neglected West Yorkshire canalside, are competing for the first
The outright winner of the Award will be announced at this year's
Urban Summit which he is hosting in Birmingham on Thursday 31
October / Friday 1 November.
The four finalists were selected under the following criteria, that
- enhancing the quality of life of local people;
- meeting a need or dealing with a problem identified by the
- contributing effectively to a wider strategy for urban
- demonstrating high quality design in relation to any physical
aspects of the scheme;
- able to demonstrate innovation; and
- able to demonstrate the active involvement of the local
The finalists are : -
Blackthorn CASPAR (Crime and Anti-Social behaviour PARtnership)
Project, Blackthorn Estate, Northampton.
On the Blackthorn Estate - 2,200 houses developed as part of a large
new town in the 1970's - there were 87.2 burglaries per 1,000
households compared to a rate of 14.6 for Northampton and a national
average of 12 per 1000 households for the rest of the country.
Working together the Police, Northampton BC and Northamptonshire CC,
as well as the Residents' Association, surveyed households to
identify issues and employed a neighbourhood warden to target and
prevent repeat dwelling burglaries. They altered landscapes to give
greater protection and peace of mind and used CCTV, fenced in
alleyways, improved lighting, created motorcycle barriers and
installed alarms and locks to cut crime. Statistical evidence for the
success of this scheme is reflected in the crime figures: in 1998
there were a total of 832 crimes on the estate, this had dropped to
629 in 1999, 488 crimes in 2000 and for 2001 it was down to 292 total
Bob's Park - Bromley-by-Bow.
A community-owned development trust led this initiative which has
transformed a derelict and poorly used inner city park into a popular
public open space with an adjacent health centre. The scheme was
supported by Tower Hamlets LBC, the Bromley by Bow GP and Primary
Health Care Practice and the East London and City Health Authority.
The council sold Bob's Park to the Bromley-by-Bow Centre for a
peppercorn sum. The Centre designed and built the Health Centre with
a£500,000 grant from the Health Authority and a£700,000 bank loan
payable with rent from the GP and Primary Health Care team. Since the
Centre is owned by its members this created a novel situation where
GPs pay rent to their patients. The council granted the centre a
30-year lease to manage the rest of the park and has transferred its
management budget to the Centre.
Ideal for All Limited, the Independent Living Centre, Sandwell in the
The centre is a partnership between Sandwell MBC and Sandwell
Health Authority. Designed to encourage self-reliance and
independence amongst disabled people, the centre also provides
facilities for the able bodied. There is a simulated home in the
building where people can test the effectiveness of appliances and a
garden for the disabled is about to open. Located two miles from the
Independent Living Centre, the garden is being built with the help of
local residents from the surrounding council estate and those with
learning difficulties. It is an innovative, ambitious and extremely
well managed project.
Huddersfield Narrow Canal Restoration, Slaithwaite Village.
Part of the larger Huddersfield Narrow Canal Restoration managed by a
partnership of Tameside, Oldham and Kirklees Councils, British
Waterways and the Canal Society. The restoration work of the
Slaithwaite section of the canal was intended to, not only reconnect
the link through the village, but also to provide a focus and
destination for boaters, fishermen, walkers, residents and visitors
in general. The old dock area has been re-established to allow boats
to be moored close to the village centre. Restoration of the canal is
already bringing considerable economic benefits in an area of the
Colne Valley devastated by the collapse of the local textile industry
1. The office of the deputy prime minister's Award for Urban
Renaissance was launched earlier this year. It is administered by the
British Urban Regeneration Association (BURA) which also holds its
own best practice award. BURA's objective is to promote best practice
in urban regeneration.
2. Nominations for the Award, which is for urban regeneration
initiatives of all types and sizes in England and which must be
advanced to a stage where there is a record of success with
demonstrable results, were considered by a panel of independent
assessors with experience and expertise in regeneration.