Home Business and economy Partnership with Halsnead Garden Village employment site and SNP to support schools programme
Matt Claxton, Planning Director, Tritax Symmetry); Cllr Tony Brennan, Knowsley’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Development and Melanie Lewis, Chief Executive at Shakespeare North Playhouse

Partnership with Halsnead Garden Village employment site and SNP to support schools programme

by Jonathan Kearney

Cllr Tony Brennan, Knowsley’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Development; Melanie Lewis, Chief Executive at Shakespeare North Playhouse; Matt Claxton, Planning Director, Tritax Symmetry An initiative supported by the company delivering the employment site at Halsnead Garden Village is to help Shakespeare North Playhouse deliver its School Partnership Programme to hundreds of young people in Knowsley.

Logistics developers Tritax Symmetry has established a Community Benefit Fund (CBF) to support local community projects in the areas where they develop warehouse buildings.  The CBF provides a donation equivalent to 10p per sq ft of newly developed floorspace for use by the local community.

Tritax Symmetry has secured planning permission for up to 1 million sq ft of warehouse space and a new Country Park at the former Cronton Colliery site, assisting delivery of Knowsley Council’s wider Halsnead Garden Village development – the largest combined housing and employment development in the Liverpool City Region.

The first phase of development at the former colliery site, covering 161,900 sq ft of employment floorspace, was completed in late 2023 creating an initial community fund of £16,190.

The fund will support Shakespeare North Playhouse School Partnership programme.   The School Partnership Programme aims to make the Theatre and its events accessible to schools across the region (many of which support disadvantaged children and families) and includes funding tickets, transport offers, CPD projects, exhibitions, resource packs and discounted workshop bookings.  For 2023/24 the ambition is to engage with at least 30 schools across Knowsley and the wider area, reaching 35,000 pupils and their families/carers.

Melanie Lewis, Chief Executive at Shakespeare North Playhouse commented: “We couldn’t be more thrilled to see private sector organisations, such as Tritax Symmetry step up, and contribute to improving the lives and prospects of the children in our area. We are immensely grateful for their support and we look forward to developing the partnership.”

Cllr Tony Brennan, Knowsley’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Economic Development, said: “The Halsnead Garden Village development will have wide reaching benefits for Knowsley and the wider region. The employment site being delivered by Tritax Symmetry will create around 1,000 new jobs within the Garden Village and their generous donation to Shakespeare North Playhouse will help deliver opportunities to thousands of children and young people for many years to come. The School Partnership Programme is a fantastic initiative and something that schools, pupils and their families will really benefit from.”

Matt Claxton, planning director at Tritax Symmetry, added: “As a long-time investor and developer in Knowsley, it’s imperative to our company that we give-back to the areas in which we work. This donation will help give greater opportunity to the young people of Knowsley and we are proud to be involved.”