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LHT brings studies to life for university students

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LHT brings studies to life for university students

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Published by RichardBramwell for Symphony Housing Group in Housing and also in Communities, Education

LJMU lecturer Christopher Allen, Paul Lysaght, LHT neighbourhood manager Niall McDonnell and Chris Martin LJMU lecturer Christopher Allen, Paul Lysaght, LHT neighbourhood manager Niall McDonnell and Chris Martin

Thirty university students teamed up with Liverpool Housing Trust (LHT) for a tour of neighbourhoods to help bring their studies to life.

The sociology and criminology undergraduates from Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) visited Castlefields in Runcorn and Speke in Liverpool.

In Castlefields, the students were able to see how a £100m regeneration scheme has transformed the area, including the construction of 800 new properties, an £11m ‘village square’, plus new shops, a health and community centre, and public park.

The decade-long transformation has been guided by the Castlefields Regeneration Partnership, made up of LHT, Halton Borough Council, Plus Dane and the Homes and Communities Agency.

Niall McDonnell, Neighbourhood Housing Manager at LHT, said: “There’s a huge sense of pride in Castlefields, and the regeneration of the area is making a huge difference.

“As the scheme demonstrates, LHT appreciates the value of strong partnerships, so we were really keen to work with LJMU to help the students learn from our work in Castlefields.

“As well as seeing the physical regeneration, we gave them an insight into how we manage our neighbourhoods. We also discussed some important community issues, including employment opportunities and challenges such as welfare reform and the impact this is having on our customers.”

The students also visited Speke, in south Liverpool, to tour the Phoenix Park estate. They saw how LHT has built new homes and refurbished others, plus how new retail developments and the expansion of Liverpool John Lennon Airport has changed the community.

The tour was arranged to help the students better understand the social and economic changes affecting post-war council estates and new towns.

LJMU Lecturer Christopher Allen said: “A subject such as housing cannot be encountered through books alone. Reading words on a page simply cannot do justice to what is out there.

“Looking at housing estates and speaking to those that create, manage and live in different neighbourhoods brings those places alive for students. So instead of being a name on the page of a book, students enter into the life of the places they read about and experience them first hand.

“This leads to a greater appreciation of what is going on politically, economically and culturally in those neighbourhoods.”

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