Community

We build trust by supporting successful local communities.

From hosting literacy events for thousands of schoolchildren and creating community artworks celebrating local heritage, to giving young people insights into careers in the built environment, we connect with local partners to support successful local communities. Visit our stories to find out more about what we’ve been doing.

We have won awards from Business in the Community for our community programme every year for a decade – recognising our positive local impacts in Glasgow, Hull, London, Rotherham, Sheffield and beyond. We have also received accolades from the Guardian Sustainable Business, the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI), the Lord Mayor of London and others.
More on our Awards.

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Our approach

  • Connecting with communities so we understand local needs.
  • Improving how local people can influence decisions at our places.
  • Enlivening our places by increasing opportunities for activities that promote trust and enjoyment.

Our Local Charter, PDF

Why community matters

Anna Devlet, Head of Community at British Land: "As a placemaker, it is really important that we connect with our neighbours and create places that make a positive local difference. We've got a strong track record of working with partners to help address local issues, through training, employment, education and other initiatives – supporting successful local communities and creating Places People Prefer."

Local people and partners prefer places created with their collaboration, places that help address local needs. Commercial occupiers prefer places that are integrated into the surrounding area and contribute positively to the local community, as they're more vibrant environments, and enjoy a sense of community – helping office occupiers attract the best talent, and retail occupiers attract shoppers.

In addition, planning proposals that are in tune with what the local community wants not only bring benefits to local people, they also tend to achieve better quality planning permissions, more quickly – good news for our investors and joint venture partners.

Katherine Shillito, City Centre Manager for Hull Business Improvement District (BID): "St Stephen's has been a key supporter of Hull BID, contributing hugely to our success and helping keep the city centre safer, cleaner and busier. The St Stephen's team also supports many notable charitable causes, educational initiatives and employment programmes. They really put British Land's Local Charter into practice."

Councillor Nasim Ali OBE, Regent's Park Ward: "Any good development requires good community engagement. For over 20 years, British Land has been working in partnership with local people, taking their needs and expectations into consideration."

Lucinda Bell, Chief Financial Officer at British Land: "Our Whiteley Shopping Centre in Hampshire provides an interesting example of where local factors considered at an early stage of development are bearing fruit for the local community, as well as for us and our investors. It is difficult to imagine Whiteley being the success it is today without its popular local retailers, public spaces where people connect with each other, wildlife sculptures, pedestrian routes and other amenities."

Performance

Contributions and outcomes 2015/16 2014/15 2013/14
Community programme beneficiaries 29,482 18,791 19,777
Community programme investment, including management time £2,285,581 £2,085,062 £1,850,939
Community programme as a percentage of pre-tax profits 0.63% 0.67% 0.62%
Community contributions through planning and development £32,187,157 £11,646,261 £6,987,436
Volunteering 2015/16 2014/15 2013/14
British Land employee volunteering – 2020 target 90% 84% 83% 77%
British Land employee skills-based volunteering – 2020 target 20% 16% 10% 11%
Key supplier volunteering (hours) 5,439 2,560 2,146

We are also piloting surveys to measure community trust at our places, as well as how engaged and understood local communities feel.

For more on our performance: Targets and performance.

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Our Local Charter

We released our new Local Charter in 2016, building on the success of the Community Charter we have been delivering at our major properties and developments around the UK since 2011.

Our Local Charter commitments:

  1. Connect with communities so we understand local needs.
  2. Improve how local communities can influence decisions at our places.
  3. Help local people progress by supporting local jobs and training.
  4. Support educational initiatives for local people.
  5. Grow local businesses by buying their goods and services.
  6. Promote wellbeing and enjoyment.
  7. Offer the local community opportunities.

Download our Local Charter and other guidance: Policies.

Find out about our Charity and Community Committee: Governance.