Doncaster, city of dreams

As Doncaster's partner for growth, we helped it become England's newest city. Chris Yates from Doncaster explains more.

Being born and bred in Doncaster, I was immensely proud to see it become a city this year.

What made it even better was our part in delivering this, highlighted by an article in MJ by Doncaster mayor Ros Jones and council chief executive Damian Allen. ‘Doncaster’s long and winding road’ made clear the role of new and rejuvenated property, such as Danum Gallery, Library and Museum that we delivered, in creating the conditions that led to it being England’s newest city, filled with culture, self-belief and ambition.

It's our aspiration to be our customers' partner for growth, and seeing my home town awarded city status brought home what this looks like. Over the past ten years, we’ve delivered multiple projects in Doncaster, including hundreds of homes, a UTC, high tech college, a vibrant new market and outdoor retail space that even features Europe’s first Dunkin’ Donuts drive-thru. This gave Doncaster a sense of place and optimism for its future to push for city-status, with huge success.

Doncaster Wool Market mid.jpgDoncaster's newly restored Wool market has brought a buzz to the high street

That’s why to me, Doncaster is our city of dreams, and why companies like Willmott Dixon, with our skills and people, are vital for realising that opportunity. Our projects deliver growth by supporting local SMEs, sustaining jobs, upskilling hundreds of local people and driving future inward investment and increased footfall that creates economic rewards.

Transformational projects

Transformation doesn’t happen overnight; it’s a planned process that must generate its own momentum to succeed. Look at our own role. By upgrading and revitalising the Grade II listed Wool Market (above) for the council, it was a statement of intent to breathe life into the high street. Likewise, our work on multiple sites building new homes (below) showed Doncaster's intent to attract a new generation of families, with new schools and a UTC providing the skills needed to sustain growth. All this attracts further investment from those eager to be part of that future, the gaining momentum bit.

Doncaster phase 2 external.jpg

Our new homes in Doncaster have attracted a new generation to live in the city

The skills legacy goes on. Working with the council, we built the National College For Advanced Transport & Infrastructure (below), part of the University of Birmingham Group. This really put Doncaster on the map as a national centre where people learn to deliver major infrastructure programmes and rail modernisation across the UK and world. A nice way to build on its rich rail heritage.

NCHSR Doncaster - front daytime mid.jpgThe National College For Advanced Transport & Infrastructure

Equally important is a city’s cultural heartbeat. Our work with Doncaster to restore an old school into the Danum Gallery, Library and Museum puts a spotlight on a treasure trove of local culture and history, providing a thriving hub offering exhibits, education amenities and business space under one roof.

Doncaster Library and Culture train.jpg Danum Gallery, Library and Museum showcases Doncaster's heritage and its future

Doncaster is a brilliant example of capital projects driving growth, confidence and opportunity. As a local person, I’m proud to see my town grow into a city, and equally that my company helped propel this as Doncaster’s partner for growth.