VOTE ON THE NEW PRESTON YOUTH ZONE BRAND

Young people from across the borough have been working on the name and branding for Preston Youth Zone. Click here to vote on your favourite name and logo for Preston Youth Zone.

The total budget for the bus station improvement work and construction of the Youth Zone is around £24m. The Youth Zone project cost is estimated at £6.9million. As well as providing the site, next to the bus station in the centre of Preston, Lancashire County Council agreed to an investment of £5.9m towards the Youth Zone construction costs as well as £450k towards the facility’s running costs over three years.

OnSide has committed to securing a further £1m which will be combined with the Council funding to cover the construction and opening costs of the building as well as £750k per year for three years to ensure the Youth Zone’s running costs are secured. OnSide will raise these funds via its network of private sector supporters and charitable trusts and grants.

The Youth Zone will be housed in a new free-standing building next to the iconic Grade-II listed bus station, on the city centre side. The buses would continue to use the opposite side of the building.

Due to the bus station’s listed status, the aspirations of Historic England and The 20th Century Society were taken into account as part of the design work. As part of the wider work, some of the bus station’s original features will be reintroduced, which have been removed over the years.

These proposals have been created by the design team, led by John Puttick Associates. Their original proposal was chosen as the winner of an international design competition last year.

Work on the Youth Zone is programmed to start in September 2017, with completion expected in January 2019.

Planning approved for Preston Youth Zone

A new multi-million pound Youth Zone in Preston for young people has been approved by planners.

Plans for the new building next to Preston Bus Station, which were submitted in August, have now been approved.

The new Youth Zone, which will be situated next to the bus station, will house a wide range of activities for young people including sports, arts and music.

The bus station is owned by Lancashire County Council. Once completed, the new building will be operated by OnSide Youth Zones, a national charity dedicated to providing safe and inspiring facilities for young people to spend their leisure time.

Jennifer Mein, leader of the county council, said: “We’re delighted that we’ve got approval for this exciting project, which will provide a major new space for young people.

“This planning approval is a major step forward for our overall redevelopment plans on the bus station site. There’s a great momentum building on this project, with car park repairs, concourse improvements and now the planning approval for the new Youth Zone.

“Our overall plans will also provide new outdoor space next to the bus station, as well as improved facilities for public transport users and motorists.

“It’s important news for our young people, as well as this part of the city centre.”

The total budget for the bus station improvement work and construction of the Youth Zone is around £24m. Preston Youth Zone will contribute £1m towards the project, with funding also coming from the Preston, South Ribble and Lancashire City Deal.

Open seven days a week, the new Youth Zone would offer 20 activities every session for young people aged 8-19, or up to 25 for those with a disability.

Guy Topping, chairman of Preston Youth Zone said: “This is a significant step forward in the development of the Youth Zone and we are absolutely delighted that the hard work it has taken to get to this point, has now paid off.

“The potential the Youth Zone has for the whole of Preston and its future generation is unprecedented – it will change the lives of thousands of young people.

“The young people of Preston want and need this facility and with the planning application given the green light, we can now look ahead to construction work commencing.”

Youth Zones aim to raise the aspirations, enhance prospects and improve health and wellbeing for young people, by providing affordable access to a wide range of programmes, services and activities including sports, arts, music, employability and mentoring.

The Youth Zone will be housed in a new free-standing building next to the iconic Grade-II listed bus station, on the city centre side. The buses would continue to use the opposite side of the building.

Due to the bus station’s listed status, the aspirations of Historic England and The 20th Century Society were taken into account as part of the design work.

As part of the wider work, some of the bus station’s original features will be reintroduced, which have been removed over the years.

These proposals have been created by the design team, led by John Puttick Associates. Their original proposal was chosen as the winner of an international design competition last year.

John Puttick said: “One of our key objectives has been to design a building maximizing available public space in and around the Bus Station to create a major new square for Preston. This supports the civic quality of the project.

“It has also been important to respond to the proudly utilitarian quality of Preston Bus Station by designing a new neighbour that shares and celebrates this robustness just as a youth centre used for sport and as a place for creativity should do.”

Work on the Youth Zone is programmed to start in September 2017, with completion expected in 2018.

Plans submitted for Preston Youth Zone

Plans for a multi-million pound OnSide Youth Zone in Preston have finally been submitted.

The new Preston Youth Zone, which will be located by Preston Bus Station, will house a wide range of activities for young people including sports, arts and music.

The bus station is owned by Lancashire County Council. Once completed, the new building will be operated by OnSide Youth Zones, a national charity dedicated to providing modern youth facilities.

Jennifer Mein, leader of the county council, said: “This planning application for the Youth Zone is another big step forward for the redevelopment of the bus station site.

“Our overall plans will provide this exciting new Youth Zone and new outdoor space next to the bus station, as well as improved facilities for public transport users and motorists.”

The total budget for the bus station improvement work and construction of the Youth Zone is around £24m. Preston Youth Zone will contribute £1m towards the project, with funding also coming from the Preston, South Ribble and Lancashire City Deal.

Open seven days a week, the new Youth Zone would offer 20 activities every session for young people aged 8-19, or up to 25 for those with a disability.

If approved, the Youth Zone would be housed in a new free-standing building next to the iconic Grade-II listed bus station, on the city centre side. The buses would continue to use the opposite side of the building.

Guy Topping, chairman of Preston Youth Zone said: “This is an exciting step towards building and opening what will be an amazing facility for the young people of Preston.

“Preston Youth Zone will provide world class facilities and will give our city’s young people somewhere to go, something to do and someone to talk to. A lot of hard work has gone into getting us in a position where we can submit this application.

“OnSide has built an amazing legacy with the Youth Zones already in operation across the country and it is extremely exciting that Preston can be part of its future.”

Youth Zones aim to raise the aspirations, enhance prospects and improve health and wellbeing for young people, by providing affordable access to a wide range of programmes, services and activities including sports, arts, music, employability and mentoring.

County Councillor Mein added: “This is an exciting time for this part of the city with major plans for the Markets Quarter including the proposed cinema complex, a new hotel in the former post office and new plans announced to further develop the Guild Hall. The bus station is a key part of these plans, which will bring new commercial opportunities into the city.

“Our plans are part of the Preston, South Ribble and Lancashire City Deal, which is already delivering improvements to roads and public transport. This will make it easier for people to get around and bring new people into the city, which benefits the local economy.”

Due to the bus station’s listed status, the aspirations of Historic England and The 20th Century Society were taken into account as part of the design work.

The Youth Zone is the latest in a series of planning applications for the bus station. Other proposed changes include the creation of new public space outside the bus station on the city centre side, as well as changes to the road layout, the bus station concourse and the car park levels. Several planning applications have already been submitted for these various elements, with others to follow in the coming months.

As part of the wider work, some of the bus station’s original features will be reintroduced, which have been removed over the years.

These proposals have been created by the design team, led by John Puttick Associates. Their original proposal was chosen as the winner of the design competition last year.

John Puttick, who is originally from London, said: “One of our key objectives has been to design a building maximizing available public space in and around the bus station to create a major new square for Preston. This supports the civic quality of the project.

“It has also been important to respond to the proudly utilitarian quality of Preston Bus Station by designing a new neighbour that shares and celebrates this robustness just as a youth centre used for sport and as a place for creativity should do.

“Part of the building’s youthfulness, we hope, will be its openness and ability to engage young people, as well as provide them with a wide range of exciting facilities for them to explore.”

The earliest that work on the Youth Zone could begin is next year, subject to planning approval, with completion in 2018.

Thousands of votes for Preston Youth Zone design

A total of 4,215 votes have been cast by people choosing their favourite design for Preston Youth Zone.

The competition, which involved five anonymous shortlisted entries, closed at 4pm on Tuesday (21 July). The overall winner will be announced in August. Preston Bus Station design 4

The plans will see a multi-million pound investment in the Grade II listed bus station site, to create a vibrant public space and a home for the new Preston Youth Zone – while preserving the building’s unique brutalist architecture.

There were 3,829 online votes, as well as 386 votes cast at the public exhibition held in the bus station.

The public votes will now be taken into consideration, accounting for up to 10% of the final choice, alongside architectural considerations.

You can still see the shortlisted designs online at www.lancashire.gov.uk/competition, but voting has now closed.

The architectural competition is being run by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), on behalf of Lancashire County Council and Preston Youth Zone.

County Councillor Jennifer Mein, leader of the county council, said: “Thank you to everyone who took the time to come along to the exhibition or vote online.

“We’re delighted by the level of public interest in these plans for a multi-million pound new Youth Zone, alongside one of Lancashire’s most striking buildings.

“I think that any of these designs would be an excellent addition to the city.

“I’m looking forward to finding out in the summer which of these great designs has been chosen by the judges. We’re hoping to see work starting on the site next year to create an exciting new centre for young people.”

The county council hosted a special exhibition last week at the bus station, on Thursday 16 July and Friday 17 July, where people could see the plans and vote for their favourite.

The five anonymous entries were chosen recently by the judging panel, out of almost 100 entries that were submitted to the competition.

To find out more about the competition, visit www.ribacompetitions.com/preston and you can see the five designs which were voted on below.

Preston Bus Station design 3

Preston Bus Station design 1

Preston Bus Station design 2

Preston Bus Station design 4

Preston Bus Station design 5

A mountain of support for Preston’s young people

They often say ‘It’s harder to go down a hill than up, but the best view is from the top’.

And that was certainly the case for passionate Youth Zone supporter, Peter Topping, who along with a number of other charity fundraisers, led by Nick Hopkinson MBE, fought through both the mental and physical battles that come with an epic week-long climb of Mount Kilimanjaro – all in aid of the future of Preston’s young people. DSCN0199

Peter owns, along with his brother Guy (Chairman of Preston Youth Zone), the Barton Grange Group which is a family run business comprising The Barton Grange Hotel, established in 1950, a custom built destination Garden Centre north of Preston, a Landscape contracting business and a number of wholesale nurseries.

So how did a businessman from Preston get involved in Youth Zones?

OnSide Youth Zone’s Jamie Allen caught up with Peter to find out.

Peter revealed all: “My brother Guy ran our Garden Centre in Bolton and locally met Jerry Glover who headed up Bolton Lads and Girls Club – it all stemmed from there. He then introduced me to the project and we both saw what a fantastic charity it was and the work that went on. We knew that every penny given to this charity would go to the right place.”

That reassurance as well as the ‘gentle reminder’ from renowned fundraiser Nick Hopkinson MBE who has completed the climbing feat for the last six years, drove Peter to the challenge.

“Hoppy (Nick Hopkinson) has completed six trips up Kilimanjaro for Youth Zones and so it came to our attention. My wife Carole and I enjoy walking so we thought it would be a good challenge and we were joined by our sister in law Carol (Guy’s wife), John and Sue Gornall and Sara Raijah, all supporting Preston Youth Zone, whilst others were climbing in aid of other OnSide Youth Zones. We agreed to go last summer and our walking and cycling training started just after Christmas before the week pursuit kicked-off in March.”

After months of training, the challenge became a reality as did the aches, pains and suffering that accompanies such a test.

One of those obstacles was altitude sickness, but as Peter reveals, this only really became an issue on the push for the summit..

“We didn’t find the altitude too bad. We did get a few stomach issues and headaches on the second day, but after taking the sickness pills they passed pretty swiftly. But as we approached the summit the lack of oxygen made us feel very tired – we all just wanted to lie in the snow and go to sleep but of course the safety experts wouldn’t let us do that!

“We had six nights in the tent camping and that was the worst part for me especially – I just couldn’t get comfortable and didn’t get much sleep. One thing is for sure, I am never going camping again!”

Were there any points in the trip when failure was an option? Peter continued:

“Just before reaching the summit we had been awake for 24 hours and on the move for 15 of those. The last hour, trying to make it to the top through the thin air and six inches of snow, was the biggest challenge for us all. I must say however, when we finally made it to the summit, it was spectacular- snow covered with clear blue skies, bright sunshine but -20 degrees!”

In total, there were people representing four of OnSide’s network of current and future Youth Zones – Warrington, Bolton, Oldham and Preston and that was something Peter was proud to be a part of.

“It was great to take part in the challenge with others who know about the Youth Zone culture. They are all so passionate about helping young people. It’s a powerful network when we unite.”

Was it the hardest thing Peter has ever done?

mount success

“It’s certainly one of the toughest things I have done – having said that I am no superman – it’s certainly achievable. The problem is, there are so many things going around your head -the camping and the food, which at first seemed great, but you soon get ‘sick’ of it!”

The most important outcome, more than the team physically reaching the summit was of course the money raised for young people. The team followed their success with a dinner and auction at Barton Grange Garden Centre and the total raised now stands at £34,000!

Peter’s enthusiasm, passion and commitment for the cause is evident for all to see.

“You do wonder how kids are going to get through in the future if we don’t invest in them. If we could get more Youth Zones across the country it will benefit them so much. If we can get 20 of these places, that will be 60,000 young people – but we want to change the lives of so many kids. Once you have been and seen a Youth Zone in the flesh, you can see the benefit they have on young people’s lives.”

My final question and probably the most common question following an expedition like this was; would you ever do a challenge like this again?

With a wry smile; a smile that spoke of relief; relief that the challenge had been a success and the satisfactory realisation that young people have and will benefit from the feat, Peter grinned:

“I would rather just give the young people some more money!”

“No, in all seriousness, I probably wouldn’t do it again, mainly because once it’s done, it’s done.”

Time for the next challenge then, Peter!

Samira

As a member of Preston Youth Council, having a Youth Zone in her City is very important to Samira. Let her tell you about what she thinks it will mean for young people in the area:

Hannah

Hannah Keating is a Youth Councillor for Preston Youth Council. She explains why having a Youth Zone in Preston is so important for young people:

Will

Will is 17 and also a member of Preston Youth Council, he has a clear view on why Preston should have its own Youth Zone. Let him tell you why…

Fatima

Fatima is a member of Preston Youth Council and she explains why Preston should have a Youth Zone.