One Leicester Shaping Britain s sustainable city. The journey to creating a city of confidence, prosperity and beauty

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1 Shaping Britain s sustainable city The journey to creating a city of confidence, prosperity and beauty

2 About this document One Leicester is Leicester s sustainable community strategy and has been developed by Leicester Partnership in consultation with a wide range of people and organisations across the city. One Leicester meetings have included: Leicester Partnership 1 Leicester Partnership executive The corporate directors, 2 service directors, 3 cabinet, 4 overview and scrutiny management board 5 and other councillors of Leicester City Council Staff focus groups involving staff from the city council and partners People s panels involving a cross-section of citizens from across Leicester Meetings with a range of the city's influential citizens and experts on key topics, such as energy, safety and skills It also draws on contributions from an open invitation to partners and the public to submit proposals, comments and ideas for their vision for Leicester and how they might transform Leicester into a sustainable city. One Leicester is supported by all of the major public, private and voluntary sector organisations across the city. To make this ambitious and exciting vision a reality, we need this breadth of support, participation and involvement. 1 Leicester Partnership is the body established to bring together the statutory and other partners, whose joint action is needed to improve the delivery of public services and to plan the development of the city. 2 The most senior employed officials of Leicester City Council. 3 Senior officials of Leicester City Council with direct responsibility for running council services. 4 The cabinet consists of senior Leicester City councillors who have responsibility for overseeing the running of the council. 5 A committee of senior Leicester City councillors who review the council's effectiveness.

3 Shaping Britain s sustainable city Contents 03 One Leicester a 25 year journey 05 Confident people 06 New prosperity 07 Beautiful place 08 Today s Leicester 08 People 10 Prosperity 12 Place 14 Transforming Leicester 15 Our values 16 Priorities for action 18 Investing in our children 20 Planning for people not cars 22 Reducing our carbon footprint 23 Creating thriving, safe communities 26 Improving wellbeing and health 28 Talking up Leicester 29 Investing in skills and enterprise 30 Bringing One Leicester to life 32 What people are saying about Leicester and our One Leicester vision Many of the people featured in photographs throughout this document have given their support to our One Leicester work and our ambitions for the city. 01

4 Philip Parkinson (right), Chair of Leicester City Primary Care Trust and Leicester Partnership, with Councillor Ross Willmott, Leader of Leicester City Council and Chair of Leicester Partnership Executive. 02

5 a 25 year journey One Leicester is our call for action The strategy that follows sets out how we will transform Leicester into Britain s sustainable city over the next quarter century, improving economic, social and environmental wellbeing across Leicester as well as contributing to sustainable development in the UK. We hope this strategy will speak on behalf of the people of Leicester, setting-out their needs and priorities; help co-ordinate the actions of the council, the police, the PCT and numerous other public, private, voluntary and community organisations across the city; assist these organisations to focus and shape their activities to enable them to meet the needs and aspirations of the people of Leicester; and contribute to sustainable development locally, regionally, nationally and globally. One Leicester is an ambitious document, based on three key themes: We want the people of Leicester to become more confident in themselves, their communities and their city. We want there to be greater prosperity in Leicester, so everyone can reach their potential, no-one is trapped by poverty and people are more active and healthy. And we want Leicester to be a truly beautiful place, with less traffic, clean and tidy streets, excellent green spaces and high quality buildings. To achieve all of this will take time we reckon around 25 years. That s a long journey a journey that needs all of the city s statutory agencies to work together, backed by support from the voluntary and private sectors. 03

6 Tiny Deol Personal FitnessTrainer One Leicester is a vision for a better Leicester If we are to improve the city for everyone, we know we must take action to deal with the concerns that most worry our citizens, while addressing the main challenge that faces us today and in the future damage to our environment. We are endorsing the view of the world's most respected scientists and the world's leaders of governments we must take action against environmental damage now. This document considers what action is needed by us to make Leicester a genuinely sustainable city in the next 25 years. Our city has to be able to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. One Leicester is supported by some fundamental values Only by tackling inequality, delivering top quality services, focusing on the people we serve, joining up the activities of various agencies and working in ways that are sustainable will we make progress towards our ultimate goal. Above all, One Leicester is about people We want the people of Leicester to feel confident about themselves, their neighbourhoods, their city and their future. This strategy describes an ambitious, progressive and prosperous city, where everyone has the opportunity to meet their potential, regardless of their age, disability, gender, race, religion or sexual orientation. We want to create a beautiful city with confident people and a new prosperity a great place to live. But also somewhere that does not place a burden on the planet that we will come to regret in future years. Here s what we mean... 04

7 Confident people People of Leicester will feel confident about themselves, their neighbourhoods, their city and their future. Leicester as a caring community People will care about the city and get actively involved in making it a great place. People will feel they have the power to take responsibility for making the things they want happen. Those who need help will be looked after, protected and supported. People feel safe People will feel safe in any part of the city, at any time. There will be very little anti-social or intimidating behaviour, such as drunks on the street, aggressive behaviour and vandalism. There will be low rates of crime and less fear of crime. People feel at home People will be proud to live in Leicester. Leicester will be seen as a friendly city, where people get on with each other across every community. Leicester will be a city that welcomes new people and makes them feel at home. Good places to live All our homes will be decent and well maintained, with a large number having the lowest carbon emissions of homes in any British city. There will be a real choice of housing for everyone, with an increased supply of affordable homes. We will have enough high quality 'extra-care' homes for individuals and families who need care and support through age or disability, reducing the need to move home at times of crisis and change. 05

8 Paul Nixon Leicestershire CCC Captain New prosperity We see Leicester as an ambitious and progressive city with renewed prosperity, where everyone meets his or her individual potential. People reach their potential Leicester people will have high aspirations for themselves, their families and for their city. Our schools and colleges will be excellent and will ensure all our children reach their potential. People will be equipped with the skills they need to play the role they want in society. Nobody is trapped by poverty Nobody will need to be trapped by poverty, because everyone will have the opportunity to meet his or her potential. There will be enough jobs to ensure that everyone who wants employment will have the opportunity for meaningful work. We are ambitious and innovative There will be a thriving business community that attracts jobs and investment to the city, retaining graduates from our universities. We will be ambitious and bold in using new technology to improve the lives of the people of Leicester. Leicester will be successful in driving the economy of both Leicestershire and the East Midlands. People are healthy and active People will have healthy, active lives and increased life expectancy. Health services will be of the best quality and easily accessible. There will be excellent sporting, cultural and leisure facilities throughout the city that are widely used and popular. 06

9 Beautiful place Our vision is of a beautiful, vibrant, clean and green city that is a great place for people to live, but that does not create an unacceptable burden on the planet. Less traffic We will all feel that it is easier to walk and cycle around the city. There will be fewer cars on the roads, less traffic pollution and less noise. Our city and our streets will be places for people rather than cars. Clean and tidy streets The city will be marked by beautiful and well-designed buildings, without derelict properties and abandoned spaces. There will be no graffiti in the city any that appears will be removed very quickly. There will be no litter or dog mess in the city when it appears it will be removed very quickly. A greener city Our parks and open spaces will be beautiful, well cared for and well used. Leicester will be a green city with lots more trees and green spaces. Leicester will have a low impact on the environment within the capacity of the planet to cope. A vibrant city centre The city centre will be a place where everyone feels safe and welcome. The city centre will be a fun and lively place to be. The city centre will be a great place for shopping, leisure and culture. 07

10 Today s Leicester What follows is not a comprehensive picture of Leicester in 2008, but we believe it highlights the key challenges facing the city, the main opportunities and strengths that we can build on and the major changes that will affect the city over the next 25 years. People There is much that is positive in Leicester s people they are a real asset to the city. Leicester has a strong voluntary and community sector showing that people feel they can, and will, get involved in caring for others. We estimate that almost a third of Leicester people take part in voluntary activities. Those who know Leicester describe it as a friendly place where people get on well together. We have one of the most diverse communities in the country, bringing to the city a wealth of cultural festivals and places of worship. We have over 240 faith groups from at least 14 different religions. Leicester is a place where multiculturalism works and we all benefit from the diversity of our community. We welcome new communities and make people feel at home. And we are better placed than many cities to benefit economically and culturally from increased migration to the city in the future. People who know Leicester well see it as a cultural centre of excellence. 08

11 Austin Healey Former LeicesterTigers and England Rugby Player Leicester has a young population: nearly half the population is under 30 years old. This creates great opportunities for employment growth in the city, as employers elsewhere struggle to find new sources of labour. And, although national demographic trends show an aging population, in Leicester the elderly population is currently falling as more of the city s older people move out into the county. However, this isn't likely to continue and numbers of over 85s are set to increase significantly. We also anticipate growing numbers of people with disabilities. Leicester is already a place where people matter, but we need to do much more if we are to increase the confidence of Leicester people. Sadly, Leicester has a reputation for running itself down and having low expectations. It is a city that punches below its weight both regionally and nationally, with a reputation as a place where not much happens. This needs to change if we are to attract the attention and investment we need to improve the prosperity of the city and its people. Leicester has slightly above average rates of crime and anti-social behaviour and, disappointingly, too many people say they do not feel safe in the city centre at night. The quality and affordability of housing in the city does not meet the needs of the people of Leicester. Whilst Leicester has benefited hugely from past migration, which has added a rich cultural diversity to city life, it also faces further challenges from uncertain patterns of migration from eastern Europe and other parts of the world. However, the success of community regeneration projects, such as the New Deal in Braunstone, demonstrates that we can achieve real, lasting change and improve people s lives. 09

12 Jayant Mistry Inclusive Sports Development Officer Prosperity Leicester has attracted over 4 billion of investment in recent years and is certainly shaking off its image as a place where nothing much changes. Major new investments include: the new Highcross Leicester shopping centre brought about through a massive extension of the Shires Curve the city s new performing arts centre the new digital media centre a creative hub for new technology that builds on the success of Phoenix Arts our Building Schools for the Future programme a 230m investment project to rebuild and upgrade all of Leicester s secondary schools a new business quarter being developed around the rail station which will take advantage of the city s new links with Europe major developments along Leicester s waterside the city s hidden asset the National Space Centre new health centres across the city huge expansion schemes at both of our universities These investments are all starting to make an impact. Over the last 25 years the city has suffered badly from global economic trends perhaps not as badly as some industrial cities, but neither have we found the new prosperity of other UK cities. We have nearly double the national average of people claiming benefits and nearly a quarter of our workforce are without formal qualifications. A third of businesses in the city report skills shortages and a staggering two thirds of residents in the city have some difficulty reading and writing English. Average household incomes in Leicester are 20% below the national average and we have higher than average long-term unemployment. 10

13 One factor in Leicester's economic decline has been the continued loss of economically successful people from the city, either out into the county or elsewhere. Despite having two universities in the city, we retain fewer graduates than other cities of our size. Two major issues that we must tackle are the persistently poor levels of educational attainment in our schools and the high levels of inequality in life expectancy and health both within the city and when compared to many other parts of the country. People in Leicester live, on average, two years less than in the rest of the country and, shamefully, that figure is much worse in some disadvantaged parts of the city. Poor health, particularly in poorer communities in the city, is mainly driven by social and economic disadvantage and is worsened by lifestyle factors such as smoking, poor diet and lack of physical activity. There are still too many people in Leicester who are disadvantaged, without the opportunity to achieve their potential. In the immediate future there are likely to be increased pressures on public services, with less money available in real terms. We believe economic growth will be slower in the coming years than it has been in the last decade. We must also be willing and prepared to compete in an increasingly global marketplace. We are starting to change the economic outlook and image of Leicester, but we still have a long way to go to bring new prosperity to the city. 11

14 Tom Clarke Cleaner CityTeam Place Leicester has an excellent record on environmental issues. We are Britain s first environment city. Leicester City Council was the first to comply with the European environmental management system (EMAS) and won the first beacon award for environmental quality. Leicester became the first European Sustainable City and De Montfort University s Institute for Energy and Sustainable Development has an international reputation for its work on energy in buildings. However, we produce waste and use energy at a rate beyond the capacity of the planet to cope. In sustainability league tables, we find ourselves below other cities in the region. The combined impacts of climate change and rising energy prices mean that we must reduce our 'carbon footprint' and use precious resources much more carefully. We are already doing much to improve our energy efficiency, but we need to increase the scale of our activities if we are to become a truly environmentally sustainable city. Leicester is not often described as a beautiful place. The city is seen as gloomy and grey, with the concrete necktie of the ring road turning the city into a disparate jumble of disconnected parts. Fly tipping and litter spoil some of our open spaces and less than a third of residents are satisfied with the cleanliness of our streets. Leicester s roads are congested at peak times and the public transport system is both inadequate and insufficiently connected. Yet we have many fine examples of green spaces and people want more. Those who know Leicester love New Walk, the pedestrian walk created over two hundred years ago. We need to create more tree-lined avenues, like New Walk, that are devoted to people rather than cars. 12

15 Whilst Leicester has many historical and beautiful buildings, there are sadly many buildings and open spaces in poor condition. Leicester s market, once considered the largest open-air fruit and vegetable market in Europe, needs to be brought back to life as a central feature of the city. Leicester needs to be reinvigorated with new buildings buildings that are attractive and of the highest possible design quality. There must be no return to previous ugly redevelopments that scarred the city and damaged much of its heritage. We are off to a flying start in transforming Leicester the new Curve performing arts centre and the huge new Highcross Leicester shopping centre bring added colour and quality to the city centre and recent improvements to the main city centre thoroughfares make getting around on foot much easier and more enjoyable. But there is a great deal more to do if we want to make Leicester a really beautiful and green place. 13

16 Transforming Leicester We cannot change Leicester overnight we simply don t have the resources to tackle every challenge we face, or to implement all of the great ideas that people have suggested. So we need to bring about these huge changes one step at a time, making properly informed choices about where we focus our attention and resources. All this has to be done whilst we maintain the wide range of services and activities that make Leicester tick. So we need to set out our values and priorities for action, including the major projects that will achieve a transformation in Leicester. At times this will mean taking some tough decisions about the activities that can bring about the biggest and most lasting change. 14

17 Lee Penfold East Midlands and Great Britain Basketball Player Our values We believe these six values will help us make the difficult choices about where to put our resources and which projects to support. Driving out inequalities We will prioritise those people most in need and those activities that drive out inequalities between communities and individuals. Rather than just addressing the symptoms, we will prioritise the preventative activities that eliminate the root causes of inequality. We will tackle poverty and the causes of poverty in the city. Delivering quality services We will focus on those activities that improve the quality of public services and other aspects of public life that affect the people of Leicester. We will challenge the way things are done so we can deliver better value for money and more effective and efficient services for the people of Leicester. Delivering outcomes We will concentrate on those activities that deliver the right results for the people of Leicester the things that will make a real and lasting difference to people s lives. Having a customer focus We will improve the way we respond to the many different needs and concerns of our customers in every part of the city. We will ask the people that use our services how they want us to deliver those services and prioritise how we make our services accessible to all citizens regardless of their circumstances. We want Leicester to be seen as a city that always tries to help its people. Joining up what we do We will ensure that the activities of all of the main agencies in the city are well co-ordinated and work to a common strategy and agenda. This will help us to work together more effectively for the benefit of the people of Leicester. At our best, the sum of our achievements will be greater than the parts. Being sustainable in everything we do We will prioritise those activities that take into account the social, economic and environmental needs of the people of Leicester and that do not compromise the needs of future generations. 15

18 Priorities for action We believe there are seven levers for change that will make Leicester a truly sustainable city and improve the quality of life for our citizens. Investing in our children Planning for people not cars Reducing our carbon footprint Creating thriving, safe communities Improving wellbeing and health Talking up Leicester Investing in skills and enterprise This is where we want to focus extra resources over the coming years. However, it is not a comprehensive list of every important service or activity and these are not the only areas we will work on. There are hundreds of services where we need to maintain and improve our current standards. Our priorities for action represent the areas where we need to do significantly more than we are doing already. These are the areas in which we need to make breakthroughs if we are to have a reasonable chance of realising the vision. However, these are not necessarily priorities for the whole of the next 25 years. Some will be delivered well within that timeframe, allowing us to identify new priorities for action as we make progress. The diagram on the next page illustrates how these priorities for action are intended to transform Leicester from the way it is in 2008 to the vision of Leicester we want to see in

19 Our vision for Leicester 2008 Today s Leicester Where we are now: People Leicester people get on well together but people do not feel safe and Leicester cannot be described as confident. Prosperity Leicester has attracted investment but there are still high levels of inequality and many people do not meet their potential. Priorities for action Where we will focus extra resources and actions. Current priorities Investing in our children Planning for people not cars Reducing our carbon footprint Creating thriving, safe communities Improving wellbeing and health Talking up Leicester Investing in skills and enterprise Future priorities Will emerge and be developed during the lifetime of the vision Our vision for Leicester Where we are trying to get to: Confident people A caring community People feel safe People feel at home Good place to live New prosperity People reach their potential Nobody is trapped by poverty Ambitious and innovative People are healthy and active Place Leicester is too congested and polluted, but has a good track record on the environment. Maintaining hundreds of services to ensure Leicester keeps running. Beautiful place Less traffic Clean and tidy streets A greener city A vibrant city centre 17

20 Investing in our children If we are to drive out inequality, we need to start by tackling the current inequality of life chances faced by our children. We need to give our children the best possible start in life. This means not only making sure the education our children receive is second to none, but also not condemning children to poverty by accident of birth. All of our children should receive the particular support they need to prosper. We are committed to creating a culture of high expectation and aspiration amongst young people in the city safeguarding those who are vulnerable and ensuring that children who are disadvantaged through disability or circumstance are given extra support to enable them to realise their potential. 1. Closing the gap We will develop and implement an integrated 0 19 years approach across the city council, schools, colleges, nursery schools, police, primary care trust and other agencies to ensure that all vulnerable children are identified at an early stage and that throughout their lives they receive the support they need to prosper. Closing the gap will ensure that no child in Leicester is disadvantaged by their background or their circumstances and will help to drive out inequalities in the life chances of children in Leicester. 2. Transforming Leicester's learning We will improve the standards of education provision, school leadership and performance management in all schools and colleges, for all ages. We want to ensure that nursery schools are available to all children, that they meet high standards and they support children's development. Our programme will ensure that children in Leicester have access to a quality of education that is second to none. 3. Building Schools for the Future Over the next 15 years we are investing 230 million in building new schools and upgrading our existing schools, so that every child in the city is educated in a modern, attractive and accessible environment. Central to this programme is the development of a number of community learning centres that place schools at the heart of our communities and make school facilities available out-ofhours to local communities. 18

21 4. Building a children's hub We will make Leicester a child-friendly city, building a new children s hub in the city centre that will be a central point for information on services for children and young people. The hub will also provide a highly attractive social meeting place for young people, promoting cohesion and work within and across our communities. 5. Creating safe places to play We will invest in parks, play spaces and streetscapes so that every child is within walking distance of a safe place to play. We want to reclaim the streets for our children, so that they are not confined to formal play spaces. Sport and culture are essential for the health and wellbeing of our children and we will continue to invest in improving these facilities in our city. 7. Supporting young people We will improve the city s youth service so that young people are both listened to and supported through the transition from youth to adulthood. We will invest in activities that support and challenge young people to achieve their potential, offering them a wider range of services that encourage their personal and social development. For those at risk of social exclusion, we will take a more proactive role in identifying potential problems and providing suitable support. 8. Eliminating child poverty We recognise that poverty is at the heart of many challenges faced by our children. We will focus resources on trying to make sure that no child in Leicester lives in poverty. 6. Providing laptops for primary school children We will give access to a laptop to every primary school child, ensuring that our children can take advantage of informal learning through the internet and equipping them for the demands of an interconnected world. 19

22 Keji Mustapha De Montfort University Law Student Planning for people not cars We want to make Leicester a city for people and families, rather than a city for cars. Over the next 25 years we will use the planning system and investment to transform Leicester into a city of attractive buildings, leafy walkways, cycleways and pleasant, open spaces. This will not only change the feel of the city but, by getting people out of their cars, will create a friendlier, safer feeling and a healthier city. We want to make it easy to get from any part of the city to any other part of the city without using a car. Pivotal to achieving this is making sure that, when any plans are considered, pedestrians and cyclists are considered first. 1. Creating walking and cycling networks and a new 'New Walk' We will develop a network of safe routes for cycling and walking. This network will cover journeys into and around the city centre from all major directions, between key places within the city and along routes used by schoolchildren to get to school. We will create safe, dedicated cycleways not just lines painted on the side of roads and encourage schoolchildren to walk or cycle to school. We will also improve cycle training for children and provide more safe places to lock bicycles. We will build a new pedestrian walk just like New Walk where people can stroll in a pleasant environment away from cars and other road vehicles. 2. Greening the city Trees are the lungs of Leicester. They also improve the feel of a city. So we will plant at least 10,000 more trees across the city, creating tree-lined streets, small forests and green spaces. Some of these will line new walking and cycling routes, whilst others will be used to create new spaces for people to meet and play and new 'wild spaces' where wildlife thrives. 20

23 3. Connecting the city To ensure that those who cannot walk or cycle are cared for, we will invest in a joined-up and efficient public transport system. This will include improvements to the Haymarket bus station, three further park n ride schemes and greener buses. We will review accessibility across the city to ensure that anyone who cannot walk, cycle or use public transport is not disadvantaged. We will also introduce a Leicester Card a ticketing arrangement that can be used on all city buses and reduce the cost of bus transport to Leicester s young people. 4. Encouraging mixed housing developments Through the planning system we will encourage mixed housing developments, with locally accessible facilities and services, on the remaining development land in the city. We will support the redevelopment of the city s existing housing stock to improve the mixture of housing types and ensure an adequate supply of affordable housing. We will also encourage the development of housing built to a high environmental standard, such as the planned development at Ashton Green. We will use our influence to increase the population density of the city, in line with our commitment to get people out of cars and travelling by foot or bicycle. 5. Creating a vibrant city centre We will continue to regenerate the city centre to make it an attractive, pleasant and family-friendly place to be, with an exciting balance of large retailers and independent shops and excellent cultural and leisure facilities. We will redevelop the market to bring it back to life as a central feature of the city. 21

24 Reducing our carbon footprint We want Leicester to play its part in tackling global warming by having the lowest 'carbon footprint' of any major city in Britain. Global warming is a fundamental issue facing the world and we can take a lead in tackling its effects. We have world-class expertise in the technology of renewable energy and energy efficiency in the city. By building on our track record, not only can we make a major contribution, but also position Leicester as a progressive city that is looking to the future. In practice, this means committing ourselves to cutting carbon emissions by 50% relative to 1990 levels within the life of this strategy. 1. Creating zero carbon buildings Every building that is not zero carbon is storing a known problem for the future. We can act now to put Leicester at the leading edge of the drive to reduce carbon emissions. From 2013, every new building in Leicester will be zero carbon. We will achieve this by ensuring our planning team works closely with the experts we have in the city. We will start with a commitment to make sure the buildings being planned as part of public sector programmes are visible and inspirational exemplars of zero carbon construction. 3. Renewable energy We will develop a renewable energy framework and plan for the city. We will also increase the generation and use of renewable sources of energy in Leicester by establishing an energy services company to oversee the development of energy production and procurement from renewable sources such as biomass, wind and district heating schemes. 4. Improving business energy efficiency We will introduce initiatives to provide advice, encouragement and support for small and mediumsized businesses to improve energy efficiency and invest in renewable energy initiatives. 5. Improving travel planning We will expand the work we are currently doing to improve journey planning and car sharing to support all large and medium sized organisations in the city. This programme of work will be linked to targets for reduced car use. 2. Improving domestic energy efficiency We are already doing many things in Leicester to improve the energy efficiency of people s homes. We will now scale-up these activities so that advice, support and action is available to everyone in the city. 22

25 Creating thriving, safe communities The challenges we face as a city cannot be solved without the active involvement, participation and enthusiasm of the people of Leicester. Whilst we are committed to providing the support and services that people want, and to giving power to communities to improve their own neighbourhoods, we also need to release the energy and enthusiasm of local people to enhance their own quality of life. We recognise that there are many vulnerable people who need a high level of support and are dependent on public services for their care. And we recognise that some things like tackling crime and anti-social behaviour in neighbourhoods need the city s public services to take an active lead. But we want to end a culture where whole communities become dependent on public services. Instead we want people to take more responsibility for where they live and to be able to influence the decisions taken on their behalf. We want our citizens to recognise their interdependence and how working together for the good of the community can produce results. This has the potential not only to release energy and talent, but also to strengthen communities and improve people's sense of safety, belonging and pride in their neighbourhood. This approach is central to our strategy to reduce the inequalities that exist in the city. 23

26 1. Investing in community facilities We will invest in community facilities to ensure that every local neighbourhood has a well-maintained, accessible and well-used community building where the community can come together; this includes increasing access to suitable healthcare facilities, leisure facilities and schools. We will invest in facilities for local sports clubs to give more people the opportunity to participate in sports and physical activities. We will extend the opening hours of our healthcare facilities, museums, libraries and leisure centres so that they are more accessible and we will give pensioners and young people discounts to the De Montfort Hall, leisure centres and Curve performing arts centre. 2. Making communities safer The people of Leicester want neighbourhoods that are safe and clean. In particular, people want to see a policy of zero tolerance towards anti-social and threatening behaviour, vandalism, litter and graffiti. So we will work together with communities to deal with these major issues. We will employ a team of new city wardens, accountable to the local communities they serve, who will help to achieve this. 3. Empowering and challenging communities We want communities to take control of the issues that matter to them, so they are not passive consumers of public services but play an active role in shaping where they live. We will develop the capacity of local communities to identify common needs, influence public services and involve people in improving their neighbourhoods, taking responsibility for making the changes that matter to them. We will launch a series of challenges aimed at engaging communities and individuals in making changes to their neighbourhoods. The first of these will be a challenge to reduce carbon emissions (along the lines of the previously successful Turning the Tide campaign). We will also devolve elements of our budgets to communities and neighbourhoods so they can make decisions on how the money is spent locally. 4. Developing a community contract In consultation with our communities, we will develop a 'community contract' that will help people identify what they can do for their own communities. This will include the things that people can expect from each other for example, keeping gardens tidy and streets clean as well as the things they need to do as individuals to help deliver this strategy, such as getting involved in their children s education, encouraging and supporting their children and making sure children turn up at school on time and properly prepared. 24

27 Karl Brown Former Great Britain and England Basketball Player 5. Developing language skills Language is an essential skill that underpins so many things: access to jobs, access to services, simply playing a part in the local community. We are happy to celebrate the diversity of languages in the city, but inevitably the lack of a good grasp of English creates exclusion. We must ensure that all people speak and understand enough English to live fulfilling lives and make a contribution to the life of the city. So we want to make sure that everyone has the opportunity to read, write and speak English. We will increase access to English language classes and remove any barriers people have in learning English. 6. Improving people s homes Over the next three years we will invest more than 150m to bring all of Leicester s council houses up to the decent homes standard. 9,000 private homes in Leicester are also below this standard, so we will continue to advise and support vulnerable and low-income homeowners on improving their homes. And we will continue to improve the accessibility of our housing stock for those people who have specific needs. 7. Increasing opportunities for independence We want to deliver all of our services in ways that allow disabled and older people to choose how they live their lives. Currently there is a shortage of suitable housing in Leicester for our elderly and disabled population. So we will improve our existing stock of bungalows to ensure they are suitable and accessible for those people who are active and want to remain independent. This will also help to release larger houses for families who desperately need them. We will also increase the stock of extra care housing to give older and vulnerable people who might otherwise consider residential care the chance to stay independent, but with greater support. 8. Improving social housing We are committed to ensuring there is sufficient housing in the city that everyone can afford. To do this we will look at how we can make more affordable social housing available to people on lower incomes. This could include support for mutual housing schemes and increased funding for housing associations. 25

28 Rosemary Conley CBE,D.L. Improving wellbeing and health We know that Leicester must face up to some difficult issues if its people are to live longer, healthier and happier lives. The general health of people in Leicester is not improving as quickly as in the rest of the country and, whilst life expectancy is increasing, it s not increasing as fast as elsewhere. This means that people in Leicester can currently expect to live, on average, two years less than in the rest of the country. This gap in life expectancy is widening over time and is even worse for the city s poorer communities an inequality we need to address. But our approach is not simply about treating the symptoms of physical illness. To make a real difference we must tackle the root causes of physical and mental illness, which are often driven by underlying social and economic disadvantage for example, unemployment, low skill levels, poor housing or low household income. stimulating and enjoyable ways. We want to add years to life and life to years. These are the areas we need to address if we are to give people the chance to live longer, healthier and happier lives. We will help to improve the physical and mental health and happiness of local people by providing the support and services they need to maintain and improve their health and by giving power to individuals and communities to improve their own wellbeing. The inequalities in health between different groups especially vulnerable people and marginalised, hard-to-reach groups will get particular support. By creating One Healthy Leicester we will ensure everyone has the ability and opportunity to participate actively in the life of the city. Nor is our approach limited simply to issues of health. Older and vulnerable people need our special support if they are to live fuller, more independent lives within the community. And people need access to a wide range of cultural facilities if they are to spend their leisure time in 26

29 1. Improving community services and support We will invest in community facilities and services, so that everyone can access high quality health and social care. And we will develop a broader range of safe and effective care services in the community, allowing people to access the services they need as close to home as possible. We will ensure that our services are flexible, available to everyone and provided in ways and at times that people want. We will expand and improve individual, tailored packages of support for people who are vulnerable or who have long-term conditions such as diabetes. 2. Improving access to preventative services We will invest in services that protect and maintain health and happiness, including health screening for cancer, immunisations and treatments (such as management of blood pressure and cholesterol) that reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. We will make preventative services easily accessible and will ensure that these are targeted more effectively towards those communities and people that need them most. 3. Actions to make healthy choices easier choices We will make it easier for people to adopt healthy lifestyles by investing in infrastructure that supports everyone s wellbeing, such as walking and cycling networks and community facilities for sports and physical activity. We will also expand key programmes aimed at changing people s lifestyles, such as support to stop smoking. We will improve awareness of healthy lifestyles, promote the value of walking, cycling and physical activity, and influence public opinion in Leicester towards limiting those lifestyle factors that damage health such as smoking, lack of physical activity, being overweight or obese, poor diet and drinking too much alcohol. 4. Improving support for older and vulnerable people We will find imaginative ways to support those older and vulnerable people as well as people with mental health problems to live fuller, independent lives within our community. We will improve housing and other support services for those people and increase their ability to make informed choices about the support they need to live independently. 5. Better support for carers We will provide better support, advice and information to the many carers in Leicester, recognising the valuable role they play in supporting older and vulnerable people. 6. Tackling high rates of teenage pregnancies We will step up our work to reduce the high rates of teenage pregnancies in parts of Leicester by increasing sex and relationships education for young people, further developing support, care and advice services and broadening the life aspirations of young people through better employment opportunities. 27

30 Talking up Leicester Leicester has an unfortunate reputation for talking itself down. Yet we have a lot to be proud of in Leicester and we want the people of Leicester to take greater pride in their city. We also want people who don t know Leicester very well to see it as the progressive, confident, cohesive and vibrant city that it is. So we will create a strong regional and national identity for Leicester and communicate our successes to as wide an audience as possible, which we hope will also help to inspire the people who live here to become greater champions of the city. 1. Championing Leicester Over the coming years we will use the One Leicester brand to promote Leicester as widely as possible, working in partnership with major businesses and other organisations across the city. One Leicester will celebrate the exciting developments and changes happening in our city and raise Leicester s regional, national and international profile. It is a statement of how the city has moved on and what to expect when living in, working in and visiting Leicester in the future. 2. Promoting pride and success We want the people of Leicester to be as proud as possible of their city and the many positive changes that are happening. We will highlight the achievements and successes of the city and its people to audiences both within and outside the city, promote strongly the many events and festivals hosted by the city and continually celebrate our progress in making Leicester a great place to live, work in and visit. We will also set up an awards scheme for people and communities in the city who have achieved success and have helped to put Leicester and its people on the map. 3. Generating more ideas for the future We want to create a culture where all of the people of Leicester feel they have a part to play in making our city a great city. We will continue to encourage everyone to put forward ideas to improve the city. Each year we will hold public meetings and conferences to generate ideas and widespread discussion on how we tackle our biggest challenges. 4. Giving Leicester a louder voice Through regional, national and international partnerships we will play a much more active role in developing new structures that place Leicester at the heart of regional policy and ensure Leicester s voice is heard in the key areas that affect its citizens. 28

31 Investing in skills and enterprise The economy of the city underpins so much of what we do. Whilst there is huge public spending in the city, more than three quarters of the city's economy depends on private business. We recognise that poverty is the root cause of many of the difficulties facing people in the city and by improving the city s economy we can help lift more people out of poverty. We are committed to developing Leicester s economy by investing in skills and enterprise and by attracting more businesses and investment to the city. We will also support the expansion of local businesses of all sizes, so they can grow stronger and increase employment opportunities for Leicester people, while retaining more of the generated wealth locally. 1. Creating a new economic development company In partnership with Leicestershire County Council, we will establish a new economic development company for Leicester that will co-ordinate and promote the regeneration of the city and its neighbourhoods, with an emphasis on creating more jobs and high quality urban developments in the city. 2. Improving skills for employment Over the long term we expect our extra investment in children to produce higher levels of skills and greater ambition in the city. However, we also need to tackle shorter-term skills shortages. We will improve skills levels, particularly for those with low skill levels, by encouraging employers to invest more in training and skills development. We will ask all partners to sign a skills pledge and work with our universities and colleges to focus more resources on tailoring training programmes to employers' needs. We will also increase our efforts to give those who are without work the skills they need to find suitable employment. 3. Improving business infrastructure We will use the planning system to ensure that, across the city, there is sufficient land to create employment opportunities. We will continue to work with investors and developers to ensure that there are enough suitable premises in Leicester for businesses at all stages of their lifecycle. We will also work with our neighbours across the region to ensure the infrastructure that businesses need is suitable and to improve transport links both within the region and to key national and international destinations. 4. Supporting enterprise We will encourage local businesses, including start-ups, to take advantage of the opportunities in the city. This will include improving their access to public sector procurement opportunities and providing services that will reduce Leicester's carbon footprint. We will also improve the level of support to business start-ups and growth businesses, including social enterprises. We will work with our two universities to improve knowledge transfer between them and local businesses and to encourage spin-off businesses in the city. We will complete the development of the science park around the National Space Centre and continue efforts to attract hi-tech businesses into the Leicester economy. We will work with our business community to help maximise the potential of our links to the emerging economies of India and China, as well as recognising the importance of domestic markets. 5. Supporting business We will work closely with businesses in and around the city to support business-led initiatives that bring further opportunities for growth and wealth to Leicester and its people. 29

32 Bringing One Leicester to life Rather than being a blueprint, One Leicester is the starting point for a process a catalyst that will hopefully trigger great changes and improvements in our city. It is not intended to direct, but rather to inspire people to get involved in transforming Leicester. Through it, we can start planning for the city we want. To add detail and richness to the broad programmes of work identified here, we anticipate (and hope) there will be a great deal of further analysis and debate within many of the organisations that can help to deliver this vision. Over 2.5 billion of public money is spent in Leicester every year. Over the next 25 years that s more than 60 billion at current values. Around 44,000 people nearly of a third of Leicester s entire workforce are employed in the public sector. By co-ordinating all of these resources, and aligning them with One Leicester, we can make a big difference. We are committed to ensuring that the public services delivered across Leicester are among the best and most effective in the country. With so many people and so much going on in the city, co-ordinating activities and strategies will be challenging. A number of processes will be put into place to ensure that this vision is a living and flexible programme that will continue to influence the way people work and to be influenced by the people of Leicester. These are the key processes that will bring One Leicester to life: Shared strategy and values Leicester Partnership is the forum through which partner organisations co-ordinate and align key strategies that will shape the future of the city. Through Leicester Partnership, all partners have agreed they will align their services and activities with One Leicester and identify how their own work needs to evolve to deliver the vision. For example, within Leicester City Council this will be done through the service planning process and alignment of key strategies, reinforced by an internal change programme that will influence the culture of the council and may have a similar impact on other partner organisations. 30

33 Edmond Isacc MBE East MidlandsTrains Customer Service Officer Improved co-ordination We will co-ordinate the design and delivery of services across different organisations. We will improve joined-up working through a joint leadership development rogramme open to all partners across the city. This programme will help to build strong working relationships between the key organisations that can make One Leicester a reality. We will also develop joint initiatives with neighbouring areas on growth and transport, making better use of joint commissioning opportunities available through collaboration with other local authorities. Alignment with the local and multi area agreements Whilst we have been developing this vision, we have also been working on a local area agreement between Leicester City Council, its partners in Leicester Partnership and central government. This agreement will help deliver One Leicester s ambitions for the city and its people. In effect it will be the delivery plan for the first three years of this vision. The delivery plans of key agencies in Leicester will similarly be aligned with the priorities of a wider agreement. We will agree challenging improvement targets and report our performance both to the people of Leicester and to central government, to show how we are progressing towards achieving our vision. Working with our partners, including Leicestershire County Council, we will lead the development and delivery of a Leicestershire-wide multi area agreement, prioritising the development of our local economy. One Big Idea programme Our One Big Idea programme will continue to run, encouraging the people of Leicester to come up with innovative solutions to improve the city. An annual round of public meetings and conferences will aim to address the biggest challenges we face in the city. State of the City report We will produce an annual State of the City report, showing Leicester s progress towards sustainability. We will use this report to benchmark progress against other cities. This will be supported by reports on our performance and achievements through the local area agreement. 31

34 What people are saying about Leicester and our One Leicester vision One Leicester is a major breakthrough in the way the city plans its future. By bringing all of these key organisations together we have, for the very first time, created a clear sense of direction and purpose for the city. I am excited at the prospects for Leicester and absolutely committed to ensuring we deliver the vision outlined in One Leicester. Philip Parkinson, Chair of Leicester City PCT and Chair of Leicester Partnership I am delighted that so many organisations and individuals have rallied around One Leicester. In all of my time here in Leicester I cannot remember such a powerful, unifying statement receiving such backing. The challenge we all face now is to deliver the changes we know Leicester and its people expect to see over the coming years. Cllr Ross Willmott, Leader of Leicester City Council and Chair of Leicester Partnership Executive Leicestershire Constabulary supports the One Leicester vision. We will continue to work with our many partners across the city to build a safe, secure and successful future. Matt Baggott, Chief Constable, Leicestershire Constabulary One Leicester is a challenging and ambitious strategy that really brings to life the vision for the city. I welcome its focus on skills, community cohesion and the environment. These themes reflect the challenges facing the region, and the strategy is a real opportunity for the people of Leicester to lead change and build on their diversity and many other strengths. Jonathan Lindley, Regional Director, Government Office for the East Midlands I am delighted that a priority of the strategy is to improve the prosperity of Leicester. It is vital that the local economy is supported so that it continues to grow and develop. Rick Moore, Chairman, Leicester Shire Economic Partnership Leicester and Leicestershire have been my home and place of work for the last 40 years. The One Leicester strategy and the brand will provide a focus for our city and county to be the best in the country in the 21st century. Andrew Granger, President, Leicestershire Chamber of Commerce The successful regeneration of Leicester requires long-term planning, coordination and adequate investment. These requirements inevitably span more than one electoral term and are too important to be subject to political short-termism. Accordingly, I welcome the creation of a 25-year strategy: One Leicester. Ian Borley, Chairman, Leicestershire Business Voice 32

35 The One Leicester strategy is ambitious and exciting. One Leicester is underpinned by important values: a city where people can realise their full potential; where businesses can thrive; and where all communities share in a commitment to the environment around us. These values will drive Leicester forward as we embrace the next 25 years with a new confidence. Sir Peter Soulsby MP, Leicester South One Leicester s 25 year vision is an ambitious, innovative and sustainable strategy which will not only transform the lives of people who live here but will put Leicester firmly on the map as a great place to live, work and visit. I have no doubt that this strategy will become a benchmark that other cities aspire to replicate. Rt Hon Patricia Hewitt MP, Leicester West One Leicester provides a focal point for pride in our brilliant city. It will direct our city s energy and passion, creating a centre for business, investors and visitors that is known across the world. I am really excited about the launch of this important strategy. Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP, Leicester East This is a vision to be proud of, with children as our first priority for action. People of all faiths and none can commit to this. We can transform our future: we must transform it. And we will. Bishop Tim Stephens, Bishop of Leicester This is a formative period in the city's development. All together we can contribute to Leicester becoming successful socially and economically. Professor Robert Burgess,Vice-Chancellor, University of Leicester De Montfort University is proud to sit in the heart of Leicester and we fully support the One Leicester strategy that will raise the profile of our great city. Professor Philip Tasker,Vice-Chancellor, De Montfort University One Leicester is a compelling vision of a better future for our city. The challenges to achieving it are formidable. Voluntary and community groups relish the opportunity to contribute towards the overcoming of these challenges. We are, in short, determined to be part of the solution not part of the problem. David Brazier, Chair of Trustee Board, Voluntary Action Leicester Our substantial investment in Highcross is a statement of the confidence we have in Leicester. Our engagement with the city s leaders has helped to deliver this major regeneration project and we have been proud and delighted to play such a central part in helping to lay the foundations for the city s future success. We look forward to a long and productive partnership with a city that is clearly on the way up. Richard Brown, Development Manager, Hammerson For Leicester to find the right future, we must forge strong partnerships between key organisations in the city. It is hugely encouraging to see so many people working together to drive forward the progress being made in education, health, equality, social welfare and public safety. Leicester is a city on the move. Nick Carter, Editor, Leicester Mercury One Leicester sums up our city's exciting future...and BBC Radio Leicester wants to play a full part in that, as we seek to reflect the views and lives of everyone who lives here. Kate Squire, Managing Editor, BBC Radio Leicester One Leicester describes a city where people from different faiths traditions, practices and cultures can live together with mutual respect, celebrate diversity with their common ground, promote understanding and good relations and have respect for each other. Minou Cortazzi, Chair, Leicester Council of Faiths One Leicester sets out an exciting and challenging vision for the future of the city. A future where there is growth and opportunity for all. David Clayton, Managing Director, Leicester Tigers Never before has there been such an opportunity to change how people feel about Leicester. I am confident that One Leicester will provide the perfect context to allow the city s image to be repositioned for good. Martin Peters, Chief Executive, Leicester Shire Promotions

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