Sarah Chicken is now in her first year of the BSc Real Estate Management. She wrote to Property Week to explain how she was inspired to prepare for her time as a student at Oxford Brookes by undertaking an extended project as part of her A level studies. Here's the letter in full:
Trafford Centre’s true worth
Sir, To prepare myself for a degree in real estate management at Oxford Brookes University, I undertook an extended project qualification while studying for my A levels. Inspired by an interview in Property Week that focused on John Whittaker, founder of the Peel Group, which owns Manchester’s Trafford Centre, I wanted to discover to what extent the scheme had aided the regeneration of the surrounding area (PW analysis, 20.01.12).
The mall has had positive and negative effects on both a social and economic scale. Those who have suffered the most are small local business owners who have struggled to compete with the shopping experience and convenience the centre provides. However, many of the negative impacts — for example, additional crimes such as shoplifting at the centre — have been way below the level originally predicted by local police because of additional efforts by them to keep them to a minimum. The 8,000 people employed there benefited the most.
Had Peel not persevered with a planning battle that spanned more than a decade, Trafford would be struggling in terms of unemployment and property market prosperity to a much greater level than today.
For more information about the Trafford Centre, it's impact and the history of the site, take a look at the following:
Regional Review - Trafford
Trafford Centre Information Pack
And yes, Sarah Chicken is from Manchester. Bolton to be exact. And for something completely different, here's some footage of Sarah taking part in a charity parachute jump with her granddad to raise money for SSAFA, the charity which gives support and care to service men and women and their families. Sarah and her granddad raised over £15,000 in gifts and pledges.