Social value and community

We are committed to working with communities and ensuring our developments deliver direct benefits for local people that extend beyond the boundary of the site.
Our planning application is supported by a Social Value Statement that has been developed to describe the approach that we propose to maximise the potential social value likely to be created through our plans for Thrapston Business Park.

IM Properties’ commitment to delivering social value is informed by Sustainable Futures – our long-term sustainability vision and its three central themes of People, Place and Planet. Our approach is aligned to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, which provide a blueprint to help us achieve a better and more sustainable future for all.

We want to maximise the community benefits arising from our investment and activity in Thrapston. This could be through a combination of skills, training and education programmes, supporting community projects, and delivering facilities and amenities that local people want to use.

The extent and nature of the social value opportunity at Thrapston Business Park will be shaped by our understanding of the local issues and context, and how the design, delivery and long-term stewardship of the site might align with this.

Our initial research has given us an insight into the issues potentially impacting on Thrapston and Titchmarsh, a number of which the project may be able to support. These are focused on the following themes:

  • Wellbeing including support for those on low incomes
  • Support for young people including mental health
  • Support for older people to help them maintain independence
  • Nature and the environment
  • Arts, sport, culture and heritage

People: community fund

Independent of the planning process, we would create a community fund for Thrapston, Titchmarsh and surrounding villages that could be used to support local community projects. These could range from improving public spaces and facilities, to improving community buildings, or supporting community projects and initiatives that can benefit individuals of all ages and backgrounds.

Place: improving skills

We work with prospective and new occupiers of our sites to explore ways to help local people access new jobs and improve their skills.

We are delivering extensive construction-related skills, training and education programmes in other parts of the West and East Midlands, and would bring relevant elements of this approach to Thrapston to ensure local skills are developed and job opportunities are created during the construction phase.

We are also collaborating with other parts of our business to provide broader educational support to make a positive contribution to whole school outcomes.

Place: community access to green spaces and amenities

The site provides an opportunity to deliver new, publicly accessible green spaces and outdoor amenities for people of all ages in Thrapston and Titchmarsh.

Our plans include a network of linked green spaces and amenities across the site, alongside options to enhance public access on parcels of off-site land bordering Titchmarsh.

We are also exploring how the development could support existing local projects, including plans for the Greenway and the Thrapston Nene Valley Park. We will continue to liaise with the council and other interested parties alongside the planning process to progress these opportunities.

Planet: net zero construction

Construction of Thrapston Business Park would be net zero carbon*. Carbon emissions from the build would be offset as part of an approved and certified offsetting scheme. Our appointed contractor would consider how the carbon footprint of the project can be reduced by minimising transport movements and carefully selecting construction materials.

Applies only to plots 2 - 4.

Delivering improved social outcomes at Peddimore

We have made a long-term commitment at Peddimore, Birmingham to deliver a programme of Social Value activity. We aim to support and empower people local to Peddimore and we believe that it can be the catalyst for greater opportunities for local people who may not work directly at the site.

Prior to the employment park being operational, we’ve delivered 845 hours of volunteering, raised over £65,000 for community projects, and provided over £55,000 of funding to 28 projects.

Together with local training providers, schools, colleges and community groups, we’re actively nurturing talent in the area and in doing so helping to address the national skills shortages in the construction, manufacturing and logistics sectors.

Social value at Mercia Park

We are working with our contractor and supply chain to provide job, work experience and training opportunities; engaging with local businesses to maximise contract and supplier opportunities locally; and supporting local schools, colleges and universities to inspire young people to consider careers in the construction and built environment sectors.

We set up an on-site ‘Future of Construction’ Training Centre that is being used by our contractor and local training providers to host skills courses and recruitment days, and opened a Sustainability & Innovation Hub to showcase new technologies being used in the development and provide a space to host educational visits.

Separately, we launched the £350,000 Mercia Park Community Fund to help local projects. Managed by Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation, the fund will typically offer grants of up to £5,000 primarily to projects that strengthen communities or improve the natural environment.

Community Image Orchard Allotment Society and Mercia Park – click to watch video Community Image 1 In The Pink and Mercia Park – click to watch video