Andersonstown Neighbourhood Partnership

Neighbourhood Partnerships have been established in each Neighbourhood Renewal Area as a vehicle for local planning and implementation.

Each Neighbourhood Partnership should include representatives of key political, statutory, voluntary, community and private sector stakeholders.  Together, they have developed long term visions and action plans designed to improve the quality of life for those living in the area.

The forum is the lead partner for the Andersonstown Neighbourhood Partnership which includes the voluntary, community, statutory sectors and local elected representatives. The Andersonstown Neighbourhood Partnership has developed a vision and Action Plan that aims to strengthen the quality of life for people in the area, improve the physical environment and support local economic development.  The Chairperson is Tish Holland.

Andersonstown & Glenward

The Andersonstown and Glen wards were within the top 10% of most deprived areas in Northern Ireland and Neighbourhood Renewal was introduced in 2006/07) to address issues of deprivation. Since 2006 the ANP has continuously worked on improving the surrounding environment. Initiatives such as community clean-ups, health days, improved childcare facilities as well youth provision were organised to improve the opportunities available in the area. All of this work has been done in partnership with a range local community groups, voluntary organisations and statutory agencies. The Andersonstown ward is now out of the top 10% most deprived areas within Northern Ireland it is therefore important that our work continues to develop and sustain these changes.

The area has developed as a commercial hub within west Belfast. The district has several facilities including a local leisure centre, banks, and two very popular shopping centres as well as numerous local small traders that serve the entire community and beyond.

A Neighbourhood Renewal survey highlighted what local people thought of the area and what they believed the area most needed and these are the issues that the Forum with the ANP are continuing to address, to  develop and sustain these changes :

Best thing about the area: The people and community were the best things for over 39 per cent of our respondents, with people highlighting “friendly people” and “community spirit.” Other good things included facilities, shops and leisure centre.

Worst thing about the area: Antisocial behaviour was the worst thing about the area according to survey respondents. Other concerns were lack of youth provision, street drinking, cleanliness and parking / congestion.

What Andersonstown Needs: The highest proportion of people said Andersonstown needs more children and youth provision, a cleaner environment and policing.

Other discussions and existing research highlighted a broad range of other issues. These include community safety concerns, gaps in community facilities, limited sports facilities, health issues, limited arts and cultural activities, planned physical developments both in and near the area and job training and creation.

The Neighbourhood Action Plan

The three year action plan has been organised around seven themes. The seven themes and some of the key activities under each theme are listed below.

  • Environment: Actions under this theme seek to address the physical appearance of the area, housing need, and development of key sites in and around the neighbouring area, improvement of roads, congestion, parking, re-cycling and litter.
  • Economic Development: Actions under this theme relate to links with local employers, training provision, greater focus on employability within schools, self-employment culture, accessing training and employment within the area and in other areas, developing the social economy and development of key routes and sites.
  • Community safety: Actions under this theme seek to help people know who to contact in various situations, target abuse of alcohol and drugs, allow more joined up working, address physical environment design issues, raise awareness of mediation options and tenancy conditions.
  • Health:  Actions include influencing the development of the Health and well-being centre proposed for Beech Hall, a health promotion programme, pre-, during and post-pregnancy programme, and actions relating to young children, mental health, abuse of alcohol and drugs, older people, people with disabilities and carers.
  • Youth: Key actions include ensuring the full participation of young people in Neighbourhood Renewal, lobbying for resources, facilities and timing of provision, outreach work and tackling the negative image of young people.
  • Education: Actions under this theme relate to supporting parents, greater use of role models and mentors for young people and co-ordination with key initiatives in the area.
  • Culture, Arts and Tourism:  Actions relate to building understanding and awareness of culture, arts and tourism activity in the area, a culture and heritage diversity programme, tourism infrastructure, public art and funding for cultural and arts activities that have cross-cutting outcomes.