Ballot communications & design support

Haringey Council (Broadwater Farm)

David sherrington

See Media quickly understood our key aims, messages and challenges and created a ballot campaign that incorporated them. We felt reassured by their knowledge and experience in the housing sector and their ability to build strong relationships with our residents and stakeholders, resulting in a successful campaign.

programme director

Background

Haringey Council requested support with managing the communications for a ballot on the proposed demolition and redevelopment of two housing blocks with replacement council homes as part of the Broadwater Farm Improvement Project.

We were commissioned by Campbell Tickell, a business management consultant, to develop a communications strategy for the engagement of the residents and local stakeholders in the run up to the ballot. 

The Challenge

Haringey Council employed our services to work on the communications campaign, working to ensure that the proposed redevelopment was promoted positively, resulting in a YES vote in the Broadwater Farm ballot and allowing improvement plans to start in Spring 2022. 

This was also a once in a lifetime opportunity to influence the perception of the Broadwater Farm estate, creating a dedicated resource to drive forward and lead the communications strategy for the duration of the project.

This was a once in a generation opportunity to bring about the most wide-reaching improvements to the estate since it was built over 50 years ago and start to influence and change perceptions of Broadwater Farm. 

Key objectives were: 

  • Excite people about the potential changes to the estate
  • Encourage people to come out and vote
  • A YES ballot outcome
What did we do?

Pre-ballot

Using the results of a previous survey delivered to 1000 residents, we knew that the key priorities identified by residents were to improve the quality of homes, tackle crime and anti-social behaviour and generate more jobs and provisions for young people.

Therefore, our key messages for the pre-ballot communications centred around: 

  • Landscape and open space
  • High quality homes 
  • Access and movement 
  • A safe and healthy neighbourhood
  • A positive future.

These messages were communicated repeatedly to residents in the run up to ballot using various communication channels including information leaflets, letters, posters, social media, video content, text messages and ‘countdown to ballot’ cards. 

See Media also provided design support including concepts for floor vinyls, lamppost signage and benches to capture attention and direct traffic to the ballot, as well as design support for direct resident communications including letters. 

What did we do?

Post-ballot

As well as pre-ballot support, Haringey Council also needed a communications strategy and additional communications support following the YES vote, ensuring that residents were kept informed of project progress. 

We delivered a communications workshop, bringing together key stakeholders to discuss what was most important to residents, how best to communicate with them, and the key messages around the programme of demolition and regeneration. The session also explored the current communication channels the Council was using to reach key audiences, how effective they were to date and what could be done differently to improve communication and engagement with residents.

We worked alongside their communications team to: 

  • Maintain momentum gained prior to a successful ballot
  • Share examples of good housing management/repairs delivery
  • Build trust
  • Change perceptions of the estate
  • Update the external audience (residents and stakeholders) regularly 
  • Improve landing/reception of key messages
  • Develop an external voice.
Results

With a budget of £10,000, See Media and Campbell Tickell delivered a comprehensive communications strategy and tailored communications workshop, delivered by See Media’s experienced PR strategist, as well as full branding and design services. The project also demonstrated successful partnership work between Haringey Council, Campbell Tickell and ourselves.

The ballot support provided increased engagement with the plans and the ballot and resulted in a positive YES vote; residents voted in favour of plans to transform the estate with new homes, safer streets and improved community facilities. All objectives were met.

More widely, real focus had been placed on bringing together stakeholders and maximising all potential opportunities to challenge long held beliefs about Broadwater Farm, resulting in a more positive legacy for the site. 

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