Colchester Northern Gateway
Colchester Borough Council
In February 2020 Concilio was appointed to manage the community and political engagement for a revised planning application for a state-of-the-art leisure facility at the Northern Gateway, Colchester.
Our strategy was based on the assumption that we would be able to conduct engagement in person. However, due to Covid-19 we adapted our approach and pursued a digital engagement strategy using our bespoke digital engagement tool ‘Concilio Connects: Your Say’.
Key to this was creating a website for the proposals where councillors, stakeholders and members of the public could visit, view the proposals and leave their comments through a survey. In addition we used social media advertising to target relevant residents/local businesses, which encouraged a broad demographic to engage with the proposals.
The results demonstrate that a digital-first approach can achieve very strong levels of engagement. In total we had 324 survey responses, 2,861 website visits and 10,636 social media advert views.
In addition to this we also pursued digital meetings with local councillors and stakeholders. The project team was able to brief them on proposals, take on board any feedback and secure their support for the scheme.
‘Concilio Connects: Your Say’ enabled meaningful community engagement and allowed the project team to move forward with their scheme on time.