Commonwealth Games Legacy for Glasgow’s East End
A new report from GoWell East examines change over time in key measures pertaining to the 2014 Commonwealth Games (CWG) legacy in the East End of Glasgow. The report looks at the period 2012 to 2016, based on results from household surveys carried out in the two years in question across the ‘host’ communities. The report is organised around the four main Scottish Government legacy themes.
In relation to an ‘active’ legacy, the report does not find evidence of impacts upon overall levels of physical activity nor rates of participation in regular exercise. However, there were indications of increased rates of walking in the local area, and of increased use of active travel modes (walking and cycling) by those in work or college. These increases are plausibly related to the effects of regeneration in terms of increased local economic activity and enhancements in transport infrastructure and in the quality of the local environment.
The large-scale infrastructure and environmental improvements in the area were reflected in increased levels of neighbourhood satisfaction and reduced identification of vacant and derelict land as a local problem. Nevertheless, relatively high rates of identification by residents of problems of street litter and property damage point to the need for continued, intensive neighbourhood management and maintenance if ‘sustainable’ legacy objectives in terms of future demand to live and remain in the area are to be realised.
Regeneration activity continued to contribute directly to the government’s ‘flourishing’ legacy objectives, with 3% of households in 2016 reporting employment gains through regeneration projects, and the employment rate among working-age adults increasing by 6 percentage points over time. However, the relative position of the study area remains largely unchanged, with the local employment rate standing at four-fifths of the city average in both years. The research finds a reduction in the rate of volunteering among survey respondents, suggesting that any intention to expand volunteering as a route into future employment is not being achieved.
The picture with regard to the ‘connected’ legacy objectives is mixed. On the one hand, feelings of local pride, which can support people’s self-esteem, substantially increased over time so that place-based connectedness has improved. On the other hand, the aim of achieving increased cultural engagement among East End residents is not evident in the findings, with rates of attendance at cultural events and of participation in cultural activities falling over time, with attendance being lower than across the city as a whole in 2016.
We have published another report, ‘Village life: the early experience of living in the Commonwealth Games Athletes’ Village development, Glasgow’ which may also be of interest.