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Film students profile work of Sheffield Housing Company

Film students Matt Morgan and Joe Gist took to the streets to find out how the work of Sheffield Housing Company (SHC) has been affecting people across the city. 

The Sheffield Hallam students interviewed home buyers and tenants, apprentices and workers on the project and members of the community in areas where SHC is building new homes.

The results of their work is a seven-minute film which reveals how the £250million initiative is changing lives.

Said Matt, a third year student, originally from Manchester:  “It was a great opportunity to produce a piece of commercial work and it was also great fun meeting people from different backgrounds and parts of the city.

“It gave us the opportunity to cover every aspect of documentary film making from setting up locations and interviews, through filming and recording, producing and editing.  These are all areas covered on our course but to be able to practice them all in one complete piece of work was a great opportunity.”

Joe, also in his third year and from Leicester, added:  “In essence we made three separate short films looking at what Sheffield Housing company means to the people living in its homes, those who work on the sites and the communities already living in the areas where new homes are being built.  We then edited these into a combined film covering all elements of the project.”

Matt and Joe volunteered to take on the project when SHC approached the university to see whether students on the film and media production course would be interested in taking on the commission.  They were allowed to use the university’s equipment to produce the film, with SHC paying for their time and expenses.

John Clephan, Project Director with SHC, said:  “Whilst delivering high quality homes is our prime goal, a major part of our remit is to work with organisations and individuals across the city to build links that will help and support education and learning in Sheffield.

“This initiative provided the ideal platform to do this and at the same time, tell the story of what SHC is delivering through the words of those most closely affected by the development.

“Matt and Joe have done a great job in producing a thoroughly entertaining and informative piece of work, which we will use to show others what can be achieved by projects of this kind.”

SHC is a partnership involving the city council, developer Keepmoat and housing provider Great Places.  By 2030 it aims to have built 2,300 new homes for sale, shared ownership and rent on 19 sites across the city.

An important part of the initiative is the creation of apprenticeship and job opportunities for local people, while supporting educational and community initiatives.

The first phase of development in Parson Cross, Norfolk Park and Shirecliffe is now complete, with 293 homes built – 70 for affordable rent.  Construction of phase two – adding sites in Manor and Fir Vale areas to further development in the three original neighbourhoods – will deliver 478 more homes.

In addition, it is expected to create up to 80 new jobs and 69 apprenticeships, while taking the value of contracts awarded to local support businesses to £22.5 million.