Home Business and economy Harnessing the benefits of social value
good to know graphic

Harnessing the benefits of social value

by Cathy Sheel

Knowsley Council’s approach to securing social value from its planning and development activity is reaping rewards.

Members of the council’s Inclusive Growth and Skills Scrutiny Committee heard about the latest successes of a policy which requires developers to incorporate social value benefits, such as local job creation and training, into major development projects.

By demanding social value as part of development, Knowsley is maximising benefits for local communities and businesses, creating employment opportunities, and fostering skills development.

Knowsley-based Fusion 21 was appointed by the council to help developers shape their social value plans when submitting planning applications.

Fusion 21’s latest annual report has outlined key achievements for Knowsley secured directly through this approach in 2022/23:

  • 106 Knowsley residents employed through development projects
  • 13 work placements for Knowsley youth
  • 27 local businesses supported with sub-contracting opportunities
  • 97 sustained employment opportunities generated for residents
  • 13 apprenticeships created for Knowsley residents
How it works

Knowsley’s “Adding Social Value to Development” Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) requires developers of major projects to create and implement Social Value Strategies. These strategies outline how projects will deliver benefits beyond bricks and mortar, such as skills training, job creation, and community engagement.

The Inclusive Growth and Skills Scrutiny Committee considered the programme’s effectiveness and potential for expansion. This ongoing scrutiny and evaluation ensures continuous improvement and maximizes social value delivered through future development projects.