Headlines: October 9th, 2002

Community led partnerships and innovation are the common factors in the projects which have reached the final stage of the Award for Urban Renaissance. The finalist will be announced at the end of the month.A crime and anti-social behavour partnership in Northampton involving the police, the borough and county councils and residents association reduced the annual crime rate on the estate from 832 in 1998 to 292 in 2001. To cut crime they employed a neighbourhood warden to target repeat dwelling burglaries, altered landscapes to give greater protection and peace of mind, used CCTV, fenced in alleyways, improved lighting, created motorcycle barriers and installed alarms and locks.

A health center was built on a derelict car park in Bromley-by-Bow, east London, by a community-owned development trust. The Centre, which is supported by Tower Hamlets council, was designed and built with a 500,000 pounds grant from the Health Authority and a 700,000 pounds bank loan re-payable with rent from the GP and Primary Health Care team. The GPs now pay rent to their patients.

An Independent Living Centre was developed by Sandwell council and health authority in the West Midlands. It was designed to encourage self-reliance and independence amongst disabled people. It provides facilities for the able bodied, with a simulated home in the building where people can test the effectiveness of appliances. A garden is being built with the help of local residents from the surrounding council estate and those with learning difficulties.

A section of canal has been restored in Slaithwaite, west Yorkshire by a partnership which includes Tameside, Oldham and Kirklees councils, British Waterways and the Canal Society. Restoration of the canal is bringing economic benefits in an area of the Colne Valley devastated by the collapse of the local textile industry.