First Community Liaison Officer starts work

Madeleine Horton

Durham University has selected a new Community Liaison Officer as part of concerted efforts to improve relations between the University, its students and residents within Durham City.

Hannah Shepherd began her role as CLO on 4th June, and will work within the new Community Engagement Task Force, which hopes to implement findings from the ‘University and City: Growing together’ community engagement event carried out in April.

The results of the report revealed anxieties among the local community regarding the expansion of the University, antisocial behaviour by students and the pressures on available local housing for families.

Durham University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stuart Corbridge, will be answering questions at the event ‘University and City: Question Time’ on 21st June. This follows the event in April.

Jane Robinson, Chief Operating Officer at Durham University, said,

“We are very pleased to welcome Hannah to the University. She will play an important part in maintaining and developing relationships between the University and our local communities and partners.

“We are committed to working with our local communities to ensure a positive environment
for all who live, work and study in our great City and we hope the appointment of our first Community Liaison Officer will help us achieve that together.”

Mrs Shepherd has recently worked as Welfare Support Team Manager for South Tyneside Homes and served for over 11 years in a variety of neighbourhood and housing roles for local authorities.

She is an alumna of Durham University, having studied English Language and Linguistics as a member of University College.

On starting her new role, Hannah said, “I am so pleased to be starting this new role, joining the University at a time when it is really committing to improving relations with the local community.

“My history with Durham City goes back to when I was a student here and now I live, work and am raising my family in the City; so I am deeply invested in making this role work for a place I love and have done from the moment I set foot in it 19 years ago.”

Photograph: Maddie Flisher

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