Rebranding Players

What is involved in rebranding?

Who are the ‘rebranding players’ and what strategies exist for places to improve themselves?

Who are the rebranding players?

Rebranding players are all the people who are involved in the rebranding process. They are people’s whose opinions affects the process.  This includes; local residents, private investors, central government, local authority and many more.

How has Cornwall improved itself?

A range of techniques has been applied to rebrand Cornwall. These techniques all refer back to the what geographer call the ‘post-production countryside’. This means how the countryside should be used as farming declines even more.

  1. Farm diversification is the method in which farmers expand into other industries. As the industry has been in decline this method allows them to earn extra revenue for themselves and increase tourism. Lobb’s Farm Shop in Cornwall is farm which diversified into having a farm shop, tour scheme and even a visitor centre. This is now the second most visited attraction in Cornwall after the Eden Project.
  2. Rural heritage has been an important theme in many rural places it is equivalent to industrial heritage in urban areas. For example in Cornwall food has always been something of an importance so a lot of advertising has been done setting a very foodie image.
  3. The food image is something of pride to Cornwall. Jamie Oliver’s fifteen restaurants are based there and celebrity chef Rick Stein is also over there. Visitors and residents enjoy it so much that they now prefer to call Padstow, Padstein!
  4. Cornwall has also attracted visitors through arts and culture. Du Maurier festivals in May are held to attract people interested in art. Theatre, music and dance are now available at Hall for Cornwall in Truro.
  5. To prevent the brain drain of Cornwall, University College Falmouth and Exeter have joined to form the Combined Universities of Cornwall. This means that students are attracted by a wider range of courses and extra support schemes are run for those who open businesses in Cornwall. 
  6. For young tourists exciting places such as the Extreme Sports Academy at Watergate Bay have opened to attracted a more younger crowd.

How was the Docklands rebranded itself?

East London has been attracted with the stimulus the Olympic games 2012. Obviously with such a major event many flagship developments including the Olympics village and Olympics stadium. However, other developments such as Canary Wharf in Tower Hamlets have helped the town grow economically too.

The new identity of a more sporty and environmentally London has been promoted through advertising and documentaries on the development on the site. Young children are also given a chance to visit sites which are nearly done especially with London being ahead of time in this respect.

Sports has always been quite a successful catalyst. For example the 2002 Commonwealth games in Manchester really helped draw in tourists. The thing with sports that makes it such a good stimulus it leaves behind a legacy which helps provide a long-term income to an area.

Who are the key players involved in rebranding London Docklands?

  1. Local residents – their opinion are important as at the end of the day the transformation is taking place for them.
  2. Private investors– without them the process fails. They supply the most investment into an area.
  3. International Olympics committee as they decide where the Olympics is held and without them there would be no stimulus.
  4. Local Authority – they give the planning permission etc.
  5. The London Development Agency (LDA) – they are responsible for all urban development in London.
  6. Central government – they set aside money to invest in the process.
  7. Boris Johnson and TFL – they are responsible for transporting over a million people everyday and the main decisions that take place.
  8. Land owners – after all something that they own is involved.
  9. Designers, developer and engineers are the ones who have the ideas and skills to make the process happen.

Sustainability of the Docklands…

London has promised to make the Olympics as green as possible as well as leaving a sustainable legacy. Here are some things which are taking place:

  1. Brownfield sites and being gentrified and developed.
  2. Lea Valley Park is a length of greenery along the side of the river which is being developed in the run up to the olympics.
  3. Electrical Pylons are being dismantled and all wires are being placed underground.
  4. Soil which contains cyanide and mercury is just being replaced but it is being cleaned and put back into the ground which is a more time-consuming but sustainable method.
  5. 90% of the material used in the preparation of the games is supposed to be reusable material.
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Rural Rebranding

How successful has rebranding been in the Countryside?

The case study I have studied in relation to this topic is Cornwall.

What kinds of solutions do we witness in Cornwall?

  1. Rural tourism which is promoted by the media and ‘image’ of the place. Cornwall has tried to create a very ‘green’ and ‘food’ image. The media has promoted this by continually discussing the importance of being one with nature and that the ‘green’ way is the way forward.
  2. The countryside traditionally would have limited technology hence why in the past many people young people moved to the city. Now though places like Cornwall are just as technologically advanced as cities; modern houses were built and many hi-tech gadgets can be brought there. However, the quaternary sector is not as big in the countryside as it is in cities.Therefore, people still move to the city to get these specialist jobs.
  3. Many rural places have opened their own tourist attraction to bring in destination tourists. The rural town of Cornwall has their own enterprise e.g. the Eden Project which brings in over 1 million tourists a year.
  4. Adding value locally is the concept of making a place better and more prosperous. For example if more bins were added less litter would be on the floor and this would be an example of value added locally.
  5. Rural diversification in the past-production countryside includes farm diversification etc. Farm diversification is the process where by farms integrate into other industries as farming is not enough to keep a stable income. An example of this Lobb’s Farm Shop in cornwall which is now the second most visited attraction after the Eden Project. It offers visitors to purchase local produce, take tour  of the farm, an information centre and much more.

What methods can take place to investigate the success of rebranding?

  1. Oral histories/interviews – local residents and key players are interviewed and they help tell us about the history of a place and compare the past to the present. They can be recorder on electronic devices and analysed later. The one problem with this is that what people say will not be accurate and will be bias.
  2. Maps (goad, GIS etc.) – they can help us get an accurate image of what the place was like before and what it is like now. We can compare these to see if rebranding has been successful. However, it is not always possible yo get hold of historic maps.
  3. Visitor surveys – rebranding has a lot of influence on tourism; hence, visitor surveys allow us to get an idea whether it has been successful i.e. improved and increased tourism. Questions in the survey can be closed which is good for statistical analysis.
  4. Sphere of influence allows us to examine where rebranding has been most successful and when we see the results,we can make judgements on whether that is because rebranding has had some effect or not.
  5. Activity maps (inc. footfalls) help us see the economic activity in areas. Comparing footfall results from the past help us see whether rebranding has had an impact on economic activity. In theory economic activity should have increased.
  6. Questionnaires – these can be given to local residents, land owners, business owners etc. They help us get a clear idea that the people who rebranding has happened for, are they happy with it. Using closed question can allow us to statistically analyse data.
  7. ACORN and CAMEO are geo-demographic database which have quantitative data in relation to things like footfall. These data base allow us to see what changes has rebranding made to statistic e.g. number of people employed.
  8. Brochures and adverts – looking at these types of sources means we can see how the image of an area has changed. and looking at statistics like number of visitors allows us to see how successful rebranding has been at drawing in people.

Flagship Developments

How have flagship developments aided the rebranding process?

Flagship development – It is an attempt and strategy on the part of the Labour government to regenerate and redevelop urban environments.

Case Study 1 – London Docklands

Olympics venue

This is attracting sports fans and athletes by attracting this young and fit workforce it hope to increase economic success. The venue itself is proving jobs even for those who don’t have the specialised training for many other jobs.

New Aquarium

The aquarium presents an attraction for families who wish to go on a local holiday. It also has attracted specialised such as scientists interested in examining different types of fish. By bringing these specialised people, it makes the population of London more efficient. 

New Water Park

This flagship development aims to crete destination tourism. Hoping that once people are in the area they spent money on other things to, boosting the whole area.

Case Study 2 – Manchester 

Trafford centre 

It is one of the largest shopping centres in the UK. It has aided the rebranding process because private investors have invested in the land hoping to receive large revenues, this means that they have seen the potential economic success of an area and made it into reality.

Beetham tower

This mega-construction hold five star Hilton hotel within it. The nature of the hotel attracts the wealthier and sophisticated part of the population. This makes the option to go on holiday to Manchester more attractive then lets say Liverpool.

Selfridges

Selfridges is now opened in the heart of Manchester again attracting this rich and sophisticated population. The aim is that these people have enough money hence they will spent it on other goods and services in Manchester creating economic success which should in turn increase the quality of life for the locals.

Case Study 3 – Cornwall

Eden Project

This is most visited place in Cornwall. It brings millions of visitors all throughout the year. It helped Cornwall combat the problem with seasonal tourism (which is one of the reasons why Cornwall became derelict in the first place). Creating a green and eco-friendly image is also a sustainable image.

Lobb’s farm shop

After the Eden Project this is the second most visited location. With EU match funding farmers such as Lobb have been given a chance to diversify their income. This has helped combat the problem of occupational labour mobility because it allows people to do what they are good at.

Extreme Sports Academy at Watergate Bay

This is an attraction aimed at youngsters to come to Cornwall as tourists and potential works. the Academy recruit many young people and helps change Cornwall’s image from a place for senior citizens to a young and trendy area. It is one initiative taken to try and tackle the ‘brain drain’ of the area.

Urban Regeneration – 2012 Olympics in east London

Urban Regeneration

These questions have been taken from the DVD film ‘Urban Regeneration – the London 2012 Olympics’ from ‘Education with vision’. 

WHY WE WON THE BID?

What does the Forman and Sons factory do?

    H Forman and Sons is a smoked salmon manufacturing firm which provides the centre of London with smoked salmon. Some of their customers include Harrods and other top London restaurants.

What does it gain from its location in east London?

Access to the city and labour!

Why is there so much manufacturing employment in east London?

East London is known as a manufacturing hub because it is exposed to cheap land, easy access to the city and labour. The land is also flat allowing factories to be built easily.

What happened to east London between the 1850s and the mid 20th century?

East London became a world centre for manufacturing in the 1850s. This was because there was a skilled workforce available, links to railway and ships and flat land. It was home to manufacturing of the textile, food, engineering, chemical industries e.g. N G Rifles. The 1900s saw an influx of migrants come in search of work and the economy of east London continued to prosper. Then from 1914 to 1918 World War 1 broke out. East London was bombed in 1917 because of WW1 leaving much destruction. Then around the 1920s, global depression hit the world due to the war and east London begun to decline. To add to this declination – further unemployment was caused by cheaper imports and automation to much of the industry in east London. From unemployment the negative multiplier hit and the area became derelict.

What were the effects of industrial growth on east London’s population?

Industrial growth attracted migrants from all over the globe. These migrants were particularly male and young. This made the population more young and diverse although there were more men then women.

Why did East London’s employment begin to decline?

I already explained about employment begun to decline from the 1914 to circa 1950s. Between the 25 year gap from 1950 to 1975 more than 40,000 jobs were lost. Eventually in the early 1980s the docks finally closed. If people had not done so, then they did it now, they migrated away.

Describe the effects of decline on east London’s population.

The migrants that had one made the town young and diverse fled. Many of the once economically active Britons fled too. This left many of the elderly who did not have the energy to flee. 

Outline what the London Docklands Development Corporation (LDDC) achieved.

The LDDC worked for roughly 20 years. They begun regenerating the area in 1981; 25,000 new homes were built, private investment was attracted, London City Airport opened in 1987, ExCel centre was planned and eventually built, Canary Wharf helped create 82,000 jobs, the jubilee line was extended and the DLR (Docklands Light Railway) was created.

Why does Norman Turner say this was ‘not something we would ever want to repeat’?

Norman Turner, a member of Newham Borough Council, says that Canary Wharf was ‘not something we would ever want to repeat’ because it lacked social engagement and community participation. These factors are key for sustainability and the success for the locals.

What problems does east London face, compared to other areas of the city?

East London has the highest unemployment yet average salary of £100,000 in 2007. Even though the LDA (London Docklands Agency) created 100,000 new jobs the only ones on offer for locals were cleaners and security guards. The fundamental problem here is that regeneration in the past whether it be St Katherine’s Dock or Canary Wharf was done for others i.e. tourists or city worker not the locals.

What is Newham’s population like (its age, social characteristics)?

Newham has the most youngest and diverse population in the whole of London. 41% are under 24. However, it also has the highest proportion of 1 parent families hence people are not able to work and rely on benefits.

What are the main housing issues in the borough?

25% of houses in Newham are overcrowded because there is a lack of affordable housing. 

What environmental problems does the borough face?

Newham faces many environmental problems some include; illegal dumping in Lea Valley, litter from food packaging, contaminated soil and toxic waste left all over the borough.

What will the Olympics do about these?

The hope is with the 2012 Olympics planes, land will be decontaminated, brownfield sites will be revitalised and sustainable legacy will form.

ECONOMIC REGENERATION

What evidence is given that businesses were doing well before the Olympic bid?

Before the Olympic bid there was much evidence that businesses were doing well. The area was already regenerating and there were plans to build a mega shopping mall called ‘Stratford city’ in 2007.However, this was put off in 2005 when London won the Olympic bid. One of the ways in which the area has already started attracted private investment – it was offering grants for businesses to locate there. For example H Forman and Sons were given a grant to locate there in the first place.

What is ‘Stratford city’? How did the Olympics change what was to happen there?

Stratford city was the planned shopping centre that was going to open in 2007. After the Olympics this site is now used for the Olympics venue. 

What does the Olympic park consist of?

Eurostar airport (Stratford City), Aquatic centre, Stadium, Olympic Village  – housing etc and a Velodrum.

H Forman and other companies aren’t happy about the Olympics. Why is this?

This is because they believe they area was already regenerating with grant assistance etc. Therefore, they firstly don’t believe the benefits of the Olympics will out weight the costs. In addition, H Forman is 1 of 250 companies being demolished to make way for the new park. They are being told to relocate. However, the Olympics has caused value in land price hence making it difficult to move somewhere close by and if they move far on cheap land then it will make it harder for workers to come in (travel disruption).

How have companies been persuaded to move out of the Olympic park area?What have been the good and bad points about this?

They have been told that the influx of private investment into the area will help their business prosper. Each company has also been given financial help to relocate. Some say the difficulties that firms still face to relocate (due to high land prices) is having an adverse effect on Newham’s economy. Authorities are still doing their best they have even cut down the size of the park.  Overall, the net increase in jobs is immense hence the business we feel sorry to say bye to now is insignificant compared to the promised economic success to the area.

SOCIAL REGENERATION

In what ways are the people of east London worse off than others in the city?

They are having to relocate their homes and jobs and there is possibility they may never be able to live there again! 

What is Clays Lane like? What is to be built there? Why is this so controversial?

Clays Lane is ‘affordable housing’ and is home to 450 people. It doesn’t look particularly attractive but it helps provide good quality housing for those who are in the low income bracket.The new Olympics housing is now being built there. This is controversial because to a certain it is like St. Katherine’s  Dock where regeneration did not happen for the local community.  Also, in Sydney similar housing was said to be built for the Olympics and then passed onto locals however because the government ran out of money they had to sell all the housing off to private investors and locals are worried this might happen again.

What difficulties do local people face at Clays Lane?

Finding social housing in nearby areas so that they can still reach their job and this is not easy as not much housing nearby is social housing and there is a huge demand.

ENVIRONMENTAL REGENERATION

What is the ‘Lea Valley Regional Park Authority’? What was its aim?

The Lee Valley Regional Park Authority  is a statutory body responsible for managing and developing the 26 mile long Lee Valley Regional Park. It aims to regenerate this derelict area of land to high quality public open space and wildlife habitats as well as preserving historical value. 

What is wrong with some parts of the Lea Valley now?

Many parts of the Lea Valley are heavily polluted and used as dumping grounds. The river also used to flood often before the Thames Flood Barrier was constructed.

How will the Olympics help to improve the Lea Valley?

It has given the authority a new opportunity to continue develop the park in a faster way. It has also been given funding to the authority for the regeneration of the river and park.

What is happening to the electricity pylons in the Olympic area? Why? The Olympics will create a huge ‘carbon footprint’. What does this mean?

There are many electrical pylons in Newham in preparation of the Olympics they are being dismantled and wires are being placed underground. This is quite an expensive procedure. Many suggest the Olympics will create a huge ‘carbon footprint’, this means the Olympics will create a huge emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

What is happening to wildlife in the area? Why?

Wildlife e.g. newts are being collected and relocated onto the new site. This is to prevent any harm to wildlife in this regeneration process.

What is happening to the contaminated soil?

Soil in this area is contaminated it contains chemicals such as Mercury and cyanide. Rather than replacing the soil, the soil is being cleaned and put back onto the ground which is being landscaped. They are flattening the land to make it look natural.

What is happening to the building rubble produced?

Much of the building rubble produced is being recycled and reused. 90% of materials being used in this project are from sustainable sources e.g. they are recycled materials.

What does the term ‘legacy’ mean concerning the Olympics?

Legacy is what the Olympics leaves behind e.g. jobs, sporting facilities, new environments etc.

A  SUSTAINABLE LEGACY?

Who are ‘Streets of Growth’?

An organisation that encourage young people to create their own cohesive solutions, instead of their own socially isolating problems.

What are they trying to achieve?

They are trying to get the local community especially young people involved in the regeneration of Newham and Tower Hamlets.

What does the phrase ‘the Games will only be a lasting success if people have a chance’ mean about east London?

This means that unless you involve local people then they the so called benefits we hope to see after the Games will not be achieved because people will not care or put effort to make this happen as they feel they weren’t given a pay so why should they bother.

Rebranding Strategies

How can places rebrand themselves?

(These are notes I have taken out a textbook)

– Renaming a place usually happens for political reasons e.g. Bombay became Mumbai

– Authorities can take different routes into regeneration. In this post I want to look at 6.

1. SPORT

Engineering changes around sports venues and sports events are a popular method adopted for rebranding especially in poorer areas. It attracts much private investment. The Olympic Games in London Docklands 2012 is being used to help regenerate the poorer areas of London e.g. Newham, whilst building the City of Manchester Stadium for the Commonwealth Games was the keystone in the redevelopment of this old industrial area.

2. CULTURAL FACILITIES

The development of art galleries, museums and cultural ‘events’ has been central to the regeneration of many inner city areas in the UK including Liverpool, Glasgow, Bristol etc. In the past we have seen this type of regeneration for inner cities such as Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds etc. Margaret Thatcher created ‘garden festivals’ which aimed to create a green image of inner cities and attract private investors. Today these sorts of events still exist in regeneration. For instance, Cornwall holds Du Maurier festivals in May to attract tourists.

3. TECHNOLOGY AND SCIENCE

A specific ‘hub’ of scientific activity is sometimes created to act as a catalyst, speeding up the arrival of new high tech industries. These can be combined with leisure and fun activities. For instance, the area around GreenPark Business Park in Reading has come up.

4. RETAIL DEVELOPMENT

The term ‘food desert’ was created a years ago to describe urban areas that lacked adequate shopping facilities. After years of out-of-town shopping developments, planners have frequently used in-town retail developments as key elements in urban regeneration schemes. Manchester for instance has seen an economic injection since Trafford Centre (shopping mall) was opened. ‘Stratford City’ was a shopping mall that was going to be constructed in Newham but since we won the Olympic bid, plans have been diminished. That area of land is now used for the Olympics venue.

5. EDUCATION

This route is closely linked with using technology and science but it is different. Money is spent here in developments in universities and their departments. We have seen a successful example of this in California. ‘Silicon Valley’ for instance has a close relationship with Stanford University. The more the university is funded the better it gets and more ‘hi-tech’, quaternary sector businesses are attracted to the area. In rural Cornwall, something of a similar nature has happened. University College Falmouth and Exeter University have joined forces to create the Combined Universities of Cornwall (CUC). This has been done to improve the quality of education hence stop the brain drain and attract private investors. 

6. LEISURE AND ENTERTAINMENT

In Blackpool, they created a £500 million multi-themed entertainment complex called ‘Storm City’ and a controversial flagship development, a new casino! To ensure perennial tourism and attract other private investors of a similar nature.

Fieldwork into profiling a place

Fieldwork and Research into profiling a place

What does profiling a place mean?

It is a short description which is sometimes accompanied by a fact file and photos which give us a taster into a place. Profiling an area tends to involve qualitative data rather than quantitative.

So what fieldwork and research can we do to achieve this?

Primary Research

Secondary Research

Environmental quality Survey

Census

Photo Panoramas

Upmystreet.com

Goad Maps

Blogs/Websites

Oral histories and interviews – Asking people about the services they are given and the quality of them. It is also a good idea to ask what recreational activities do in the local area.

Brochures and adverts

Look at the availability of the various goods such as handbags in the local area. Measuring on average how close a cashpoint is, is another indicator the economic profile of a place.

Placecheck – This is where a small number of locals (circa 12) assess the qualities of a place, focusing on what improvements need to be made and working together to achieve these.

Clone towns – A ‘clone town’ is a UK term for an area or street significantly dominated by ‘chain stores’ and restaurants. By examining whether a place is clone town or original we can produce an accurate profile of an area.

REVIEW QUESTIONS

1. What is profiling?

2. Name three secondary research techniques?

3. Name one Primary research technique and explain how it profiles a place.

4. What is a clone town? How can this help with profiling?

5. What is a placecheck?

SUGGESTED ANSWERS

1. Profiling is a short description of a place which is usually accompanied by photos and fact files to help recreate a feel of a place.

2. Upmystreet.com, Census 2001 and Blogs/websites

3. Taking photographs – they help create an image of a place and are usually used to accompany profiles

4. A clone town is an area which significantly affected by chain stores and restaurants. By examining whether a place is a clone town or has a unique identity we can get a feel of a place.

5. A placecheck is where small group of people set out and assess the qualities of a place and focus on what is good about the place and what can improve.

Why is rebranding important and needed?

Why is rebranding important and needed?

 

There are three main reasons which you may have already read in my earlier post.

  1. Loss of industry – In the 1980s, Asia grew in manufacturing goods and resources. Hence, importing goods from overseas became so cheap that firms stopped buying goods and resources from the UK and switched to imports. This meant that people who were trained and working in the primary and secondary sector lost their jobs as firms could not compete with import prices.
  2. Population change – This meant that people started emigrating to other part of the country in search of jobs for which they had skills. The state of the economy changed because economy was now made up of majority of service sector and many people did not have the skills to deal with these jobs.
  3. The spiral of decline – This is the negative multiplier effect. People emigrating, business declining and a lack of jobs meant that even if a business did start up as people did not jobs they did not have the money to spend on it hence the new business would suffer to. This would carry on into a negative multiplier circle

So what about East London, Cornwall and Manchester?

London Docklands used to be one of the largest docks in London. However, they had to shut which lead to the deprivation of the area. They had to shut because ships increased in size and they needed deeper water which the docks could not provide. So Tilbury 20 miles downstream and Felixstowe 70 miles away was better adapted to larger ships and commerce moved to those places leaving the original docks deprived and derelict.

 

Why did Cornwall need rebranding?

Cornwall is peripheral town in the South West of England. Due to lack of access and cheaper abroad holidays the number of visitors has been declining in Cornwall. Seasonal tourism is what is prevalent in Cornwall and this means that many business suffer. Also, as with the docklands many primary sectors jobs especially farmers lost there job because importing agricultural goods become cheaper.  The end result was that the negative multiplier effect took place and Cornwall became deprived.

Why did Manchester need rebranding

Manchester had a negatively perceived image because of the decline in textile and mill factories which led to the spiral of decline just like in the Docks.It led to gun crime and violence, giving Manchester the name ‘Gunchester’. To put the icing on the cake, Manchester was bombed by the IRA making the rebranding process a necessity.

So why is rebranding important?

 

Rebranding is important because it makes derelict landscapes dynamic and vibrant again. The main thing is that it is tried and tested method of increasing quality of life for local residents.