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Northern Kites Economic and Social Impacts Study


Northern Kites
Office 3b, 33 St. Mary's Green,
Whickham, Tyne & Wear, NE16 4DN
Tel. 0191 4961555
Email [email protected]


Keith Bowey - Project Manager, Northern Kites
[email protected]

Project partners

Northern Kites, the project that has brought the red kite back to the northeast of England, is a partnership between the lead partners Natural England and the RSPB, and Gateshead Council, Northumbrian Water, the National Trust and the Forestry Commission supported with funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Sita Trust.

Brief description of project

The Northern Kites Project has objectives in four key areas of work:

  1. Wildlife - the return of the red kite to its former range in northeast England

  2. People - the opportunity to give people and communities access to the kites, so that they can enjoy and learn about wildlife and the wider environment

  3. Economics - the chance to demonstrate how such a project can be good not just for wildlife and people, but also for the local economy

  4. Partnership – to illustrate how partners from the charitable, private and public sectors, working in an imaginative way, can better deliver rewards not just for wildlife but also to improve local people’s quality of life

The aim of the study is to identify, and quantify, the outputs of the economic and educational activity and the social benefits that have arisen as a result of the Northern Kites Project between 2004 and the present.

The study will include:

  1. Documentation of people’s opinions about the work of the Project and assessing this in relation to their perception of the kites as a factor that contributes to their Quality of Life

  2. An analysis of existing relevant data sets which will include reviews of:

    • The results of the Northern Kites Social Impact Survey
    • The evaluation of the educational and lifelong learning aspects of Northern Kites’ work
    • The results of the economic enquiry into Northern Kites
    • The results of the Northern Kites visitor survey
    • How kites have been used to enhance the service delivery of large local authority e.g. Gateshead Council

Expected Outcomes, Success Criteria

The study’s outputs will document:

  • The range and scale of social impacts catalysed by Northern Kites

  • The economic value and type of activity that has been created/influenced by the presence of the kites and/or the project

  • The perceived value placed upon red kites by local people

  • The educational value of red kites and its associated programmes of Lifelong Learning

  • The social benefits that can be accrued by delivering an environmental project, which places people at its heart

  • How the Project and the kites have catalysed activity in local communities, facilities and service industries

The study’s outputs will be used to try to demonstrate to key regional agencies the worth of investing in similarly configured environmental projects, by demonstrating how well the kites have been used to deliver social good since the species’ return. Ultimately, the study’s success will be judged against how effective is in influencing these agencies future activities.

Method of dissemination and resources to be produced

At endpoint, the study should present its findings in a range of hard copy and electronic formats that will facilitate its future use in a variety of situations and fora. These should include:

  • Study report
  • An executive summary of the report’s findings

  • PowerPoint of the report’s summary findings

  • A poster presentation summarising the study’s key findings

  • A downloadable PDF of the report, that might be used in future web-based applications

  • An advocacy plan that identifies the key target audiences and relevant dates for the application of the study’s outputs, and identifies the resources and mechanisms to best do this ‘going forward’

  • A publication/launch event at a suitable high profile venue(s) (e.g. IRES at University of Newcastle or ONE Northeast’s headquarters).

Related web sites

Northern Kites

Northern Kites Commemorative Booklet
Economics: Taking Flight - Northern Kites Economic Evaluation Report
Social Impacts: People & Red Kites, Red Kites & People
Executive Summaries: Out of the Blue, Into the Black

Additional information

Timetable - work should be done during the period Aug 2008 – Jan 2009 with a launch event for the study’s outputs scheduled for early in the New Year, 2009.

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