Call for Blacon residents to aid regeneration


Natalie Barnett

BLACON residents with a passion for helping to regenerate their home community are being urged to help.

The estate’s social enterprise company Avenue Services is appealing for volunteers from the estate to work alongside members of staff on a customer team.

The team would be responsible for communication issues, including editing
the newsletter and website, collecting residents’ views and organising events and activities.

Board member, Blacon Cllr Reggie Jones, said: “When Avenue Services launched earlier this year we set out a vision for a company that places power squarely in the hands of the community.

“Our aim is to empower people who live in Blacon to make decisions about Blacon, and this is reflected by a board of members strongly representing the ‘grassroots’ of the community.

“The customer team offers residents yet another way to play their part in helping to guarantee a bright future for Blacon.

“I urge anyone interested in joining the team to contact us as soon as possible.”

Jointly owned by Chester and District Housing Trust (CDHT) and Cheshire West and Chester Council, Avenue Services was set up to deliver neighbourhood services and manage assets such as land and buildings.

One of its priorities is to oversee the £18.8 million regeneration of The Parade which includes proposals for affordable housing, retail, community, enterprise and health facilities.

Since its launch in April, Avenue Services has grown to employ 62 staff, with the number continuing to increase.

The most recent addition to the team is Gemma Capewell who has taken up the role of Community Development Worker, where she is helping to support community engagement as the company moves towards becoming owned by the community.

Cllr Herbert Manley, the council’s executive member for prosperity, said: “Avenue Services has made tremendous progress since its launch six months

“The phased transfer of assets and services is well under way. When complete this move to local control will put residents at the centre of discussions about how Blacon will look in the future.

“Even at this early stage, there is every indication Avenue Services has the potential to become a national example of public sector partners working hand in hand with local residents to deliver what a community wants.”

Anyone interested in joining the customer team is asked to call Janet Gittins either at the office at 17 The Parade (9am-4.30pm, Monday to Friday), on 01244 972285 or email

See full story in the Chester Leader

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