Urban regeneration in Newport: exploring residents’ and SMEs’ perceptions of the city


Why the client needed the research
The Interim Evaluation of Newport Unlimited’s work to date pointed to ‘strong performance in the first five years’. The Evaluation also highlighted that local businesses and community groups did not necessarily appear to fully understand the regeneration objectives, and lacked a ‘voice or channel’ through which to contribute their views. As part of its strategy to address this conclusion, Newport Unlimited commissioned Beaufort to explore the views of these two audiences.

image Our approach
We used a qualitative approach which consisted of a mix of focus groups and individual, face to face interviews. This method enabled us to elicit perceptions in depth, and better understand why residents and businesses expressed the views they did.

As a means of adding value, we videoed the focus groups and the researchers spent time getting to know the city and locations which were discussed during the research.

The outcome
The results provided the client with timely and illuminating feedback on perceptions of the city both positive and negative, as well as ideas for engagement with the target audiences. The impact of the results was enhanced with memorable video clips of participants discussing key themes.

The findings culminated in a set of practical recommendations which Newport Unlimited is using to inform its communication strategy, and which will feed into future regeneration planning.