Groundswell Innovation bolsters Preston’s bid for £25m

By Groundswell Innovation

02 Oct 2020

When lockdown came into force earlier this year, Lancashire-based Groundswell Innovation found itself in a strong position, as much of its work could be switched to the virtual realm. Managing Director Jane Dalton explains how its key strength has been the business’s agile approach to project execution. In fact, by adapting to a rapidly evolving environment, they have grown the business during the last few months.

“Just before lockdown, we had several projects scheduled with innovation workshops and face-to-face discussions. We quickly made the most of available technology and were able to switch these to virtual channels. It was really important for our clients to keep a sense of momentum.  Many businesses on our Two Zero : Female cohort for example, found new opportunities to grow in lockdown from ideas spawned during virtual sessions. 

“Other projects had hard deadlines, one of which was the work that we did with Preston Council to support their Towns Fund bid on 31st July 2020. The Towns Fund is a new scheme established by the Government to help develop towns and cities. Preston is one of just 100 places eligible to bid for up to £25 million worth of funding to improve the economy, develop the city and attract jobs and long-term investment.

“We were able to build on insight gained during the #WhatsYourPreston listening project to inform strategy and to develop a stakeholder engagement and communication plan for this vitally important project. Preston was able to demonstrate excellent levels of engagement using multiple channels in the bid, despite lockdown preventing any face-to-face meetings.

“We worked closely with Preston Partnership and Preston City Council teams.  As always we were aiming for quality of engagement and cross-sector communication here – getting to grips with what was really important to people and what Preston residents were most proud of.  With so many different perspectives – from business owners to the vibrant artist community – it was really important to us to find common ground and build out from that.  We worked with a local artist to create bespoke sketches for each of the key themes, creating a strong visual connection with the bid – all part of making sure that this bid was distinctive and distinctively Preston. At completion, and even now, a Google search for ‘Towns Fund’ brings Preston Council website on the first page of results. We now await the response back from Government to see what the next steps are for Preston.

“In fact, our contribution to the bid submission has been widely recognised, and we are delighted to be working with Crewe on their Towns Fund submission in the coming weeks,” concludes Jane.

IMAGES

Chris Dorning, The Cunning Craftsmanwww.thecunningcraftsman.co.uk

ABOUT

Groundswell Innovation help people get the right ideas to market, faster and fitter for purpose - new products and services that solve customer problems, profitably. Breaking out in to new territory means diverting energy away from core business. As you take the step to expand, Groundswell Innovation bring that extra spark - informed energy that boosts growth by listening intently to what your customers need.

CONTACT

All enquires Jane Dalton, [email protected], tel +44 (0)7809 436 072.

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