What is the Congleton Partnership?
The Partnership ‘ TEAM’ was created in August 2008 and evolved from the Market Town Initiative (MTI) which had been formed in 2005 to be able to apply for government money released by the Countryside Agency to support rural areas in the aftermath of foot and mouth disease.
To be a successful applicant there had to be community consultation and consequently community focus groups of 80 residents were formed to examine aspects of the town which could be improved – transport, health , economy, tourism etc. This was called a Health Check and gradually a vision for Congleton evolved. For a full history of Congleton Partnership visit our history page. Key achievements from the Marketing Town Initiative included:
- Town Centre Plan and Economic Renaissance Strategy
- Town entry signs, town centre signage, community notice boards
- Phase I and 2 of the River Dane cycleway
- Conversion of top floor of Town Hall into offices
- Art in the Park project
As a result of the end of MTI monies the Congleton Partnership was formed to reshape and design the best elements of the MTI and apply them to Congleton. The process created a shared vision of the town’s future, shaped by local people.
The Congleton Partnership Key objectives are:
- We will formulate short and medium strategic plans for the Town
- We will work towards a clean, green, safe, accessible, culturally enhanced environment
- We will support local businesses, in particular retailing, and increase the skills base
- We will Build upon the local distinctiveness
- We will Establish an agenda for change
- We will attract inward investment
- We will develop community capacity and competence
Read the Congleton Partnership’s full constitution HERE
The Congleton Partnership is:
- A non-political community based organisation drawing on the skills and expertise of residents and businesses
- Has an executive of 20 members predominantly volunteer residents
- Has a coordinator
- Working groups – Sustainability, Marketing(Congleton Beartown Ltd),The Business Support Group (now The Congleton Means Business Legacy Group), Strategy and Finance, Youth Forum, Art Group
- Has representation from statutory bodies
- Has developed an extensive partnership working network
- Is a voice for young people
- Is linked to the Local Area Partnership
- Has a distinctive Can-Do ethos – an entrepreneurial spirit which encourages social enterprise schemes
- Is well respected and consulted by statutory bodies because of its track delivery record
- Is localism in action – a voluntary ‘umbrella’ to reflect the community’s aspirations
What recognition has been awarded to the Congleton Partnership?
- Winning the top marketing award for Action for Market Towns NW competition 2010 for its branding of Congleton
- Achieved global, national and local media attention for the Bearmania Community Arts Project. Appearing on BBC Look North and Granada TV
- Joint winner in the Culture and Environment category of the North of England Action for Market Towns 2011
- Won a Reserve Award at the Cheshire Sow 2011 for its apple juice and eco-school stand
- Has twice been mentioned in Hansard as an outstanding example of a community lead endeavour of residents seeking to improve its town
- Was invited in June 2011 by the House of Commons committee on Local Democracy to give a presentation about the aims and work of the Congleton Partnership
The Congleton Partnership would not be in existence without the continued support of acknowledgements and thanks to:
Funding: Congleton Town Council, Cheshire East Council, William Dean Trust, Congleton and Inclosure Trust.
Residents: A huge thank you to the chairs and members of the Partnership groups without whose energy, skills and commitment nothing could have been achieved.
Get Involved……… If you have been inspired by what you have read, want to volunteer or join the Congleton Partnership…….we are waiting to hear from you!
Please call, email, or drop in to the Town Hall to see Mike Smith (co-ordinator)
Congleton Town Hall 01260 270350 Ex 3