January - October 2019
Led by award-winning teams from Hemingway Design, For the Love of Place and Creative Tourist Consults and funded by Leeds City Region Business Rates Pool, we’ve been asking residents, visitors, businesses, students, and anyone with an opinion about York, to tell us what they think makes York special. York has recently won awards from the Sunday Times who voted it ‘best place to live’ in the UK in 2018, and ‘best place to live in the North and North East of England in 2019’.
On top of this, York boasts UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts status, being the UK’s first gigabit city, a Condé Nast ‘best city architecture, 2018’ award, best Christmas market in the UK, and ‘Britain’s favourite city’ (YouGov).
However, York has a challenging local economy:
- even though residents are highly educated, weekly wages in the city are below average
- young people and key workers often struggle to afford to live in the city
- there are high levels of employment in the hospitality, retail and health and social care sectors, which pay less than the national average wage
All the feedback is informing the development of an outline set of core values that will be used to promote the city in a new light, which in turn, will be used to attract better paid jobs, secure inward investment and continue to grow the local economy.
In September 2019, Martin Boisen from For The Love of Place will facilitate short workshops to stress-test the emerging core values against a selection of York’s current and planned projects and programmes.
As a core partner on the project we will also be running a series of short workshops to test the core values with groups of young people aged 13 – 18.
The workshops provide an opportunity for young people in York to interrogate the proposed branding and messaging for the city. We will explore the themes of the city narrative, what it means for them and whether the narrative changes how they view the city and their future role in York.
Then looking forward to 2020, we will be building a major public celebration of the city and the progressive work going on behind the scenes. Watch this space…