UKTGA May webinar: ResLife at Ulster University - 1-2pm 16 May 2024

Join UKTGA for our May webinar:

1-2pm Thursday 16 May 2024 - register now

Gareth Kennedy - Head of Residential Services, Ulster University

Five years ago, Ulster implemented a 24/7 ResLife program which operates across multiple sites and campuses. This involves having trained and experienced staff available throughout the night. These staff develop a range of activities and events to combat isolation, loneliness and homesickness and identify those impacted by these conditions and signpost them to the Wellbeing Teams.  ResLife staff are available to deal compassionately and knowledgeably with any critical incidents taking place within residence and managing the aftermath of such events. Following the implementation of this approach Ulster university has been awarded via the Global Student Living Survey voted for by residential students themselves the Best Student Wellbeing 2023, Best Community 2022 and finalist in Best Moving-In experience in 2023. This is benchmarked against 225 other university and Purpose-Built Student Accommodation Providers. This webinar will explain how the service has been implemented, some of the reasons for success and the challenges that are being faced on an ongoing basis.


Save the date: UKTGA conference - 11-13 November 2024, Manchester

We’re excited to share with you that 2024 sees the return of an in-person UK Town and Gown Association conference!

Please add the 11-13 November 2024 into your diary and look out for more details, coming soon. You can register your interest in attending the conference through this form. We hope you can join us in Manchester later this year!


UKTGA February webinar: Oxford City Angels - 1-2pm, 27 Febraury 2024

Join UKTGA for our February webinar:

Oxford City Angels

1-2pm Tuesday 27 February, Zoom (register now)

Sharon Massingham, Business Crime Partnership Manager, Nightsafe Manager – Thames Valley Police

Sharon will talk about the Oxford City Angels Community Interest Company, which was established in May 2022. They are a voluntary predominately female-focused support team working in partnership with Thames Valley Police, Oxford City Council and the Nightsafe Oxford Network.
Their primary function is to support the safety and security of women and girls at night. Find out how the volunteer group was set up, how they operate and work with partners in the night-time economy to deliver their service and the impact of their work so far.

Sharon Massingham spent 30 years working in Utility Companies and joined TVP in 2017 as the Business Crime Partnership Manager. Her other role within TVP is Oxford’s Nightsafe Manager with the responsibility to work with partners and implement preventative measures to reduce alcohol related violence in the NTE. More recently she led the delivery of half a million pound project funded through the governments Safer Streets manifesto to reduce Violence Against Woman and Girls in the NTE. Oxford City Angels was a successful outcome of this project where they have made a significant impact on keep women and girls safe whilst they socialise in the city.

Survey on Housing Access in Higher Education Communities

Communities across the UK, and internationally, are struggling with housing uncertainty and affordability; those hosting higher education institutions are no exception. To better understand the needs and challenges of stakeholders at higher education institutions and in their host communities, the International Town-Gown Association and the UKTGA have launched a survey to gather input from institutional leaders and local leaders about town-gown relationships in the context of housing.

The data will be used to identify key variables in achieving affordable and attainable housing and highlight effective approaches, strategies, and tools for resolving institutional and community housing needs.  We want to hear from you about the housing issues facing your community.

The survey should take less than 20 minutes to complete and we want to ensure that the UK is well represented in the data collection, so please set aside some time to complete it.  To take the survey, visit:

UKTGA January webinar: Bite Size Volunteering - 2-3pm, 25 January 2024

Join UKTGA for our first webinar of 2024:

Bite Size Volunteering

2-3pm Thursday 25 January, Zoom (registration details will be sent through UKTGA JISCmail)

Jonny Baxter, Volunteer and Community Support Officer – Queen’s Students’ Union – Belfast

Jonny joins us to discuss his work on Handy Helpers – the Bitesize Volunteering offer to Students at Queen’s University Belfast.

Handy Helpers sits with in a bigger Student Union Volunteering Team and is one of 3 flagship programmes.  Handy Helpers is a unique initiative which enables students to take part in a wide range of one-off volunteering opportunities in the local community. They can pick and choose what activities they want to participate in based on interests and availability.  From community gardening to decorating charity premises and event logistics, students will gain experience in various settings while actively contributing to the local community.

The key focus of the programme is for student development and to benefit the wider community on and off campus.  This involves strong links with Community Engagement, Sustainability, and the wider community sector.

This presentation aims to share:

  • Experiences to help engage student volunteering.
  • Space to focus on why we volunteer.
  • Creative ideas of how to take practical next steps.

UKTGA 2023 Annual Conference - Strengthening Town and Gown Relationships: Lessons from the United Kingdom

Last month the UKTGA hosted their highly anticipated 2023 annual conference, which proved to be a captivating showcase featuring a diverse lineup of exceptional speakers, all centered around the dynamic relationship between town and gown agencies. This full-day conference provided a platform for insightful discussions, with a particular focus on fostering effective partnerships between local authorities and university cities. The overarching theme of this year's conference centered on the essential task of strengthening town-gown relationships, drawing upon valuable lessons from various regions across the United Kingdom. Among the compelling topics explored, speakers offered invaluable insights into their successful night safety initiatives and dedicated services addressing noise and antisocial behavior. The event delved into the intricacies of neighbourhood management frameworks and the importance of considering broader planning considerations in student accommodation.

Year after year, the UKTGA takes immense pride in bringing together individuals operating at the intersection of off-campus student affairs. Guided by a dedicated UKTGA Steering Group, Chair Cooper Healey expressed enthusiasm for the event, stating, "This was an exceptional opportunity to shed light on the pressing issues surrounding town and gown relations and to delve into leading practice. We recognise that these roles are often carried out by individuals working independently, making our network and events all the more valuable in fostering a sense of community among practitioners."

Established in 2014, the UKTGA has provided a framework for shaping conversations in this arena for the past ten years. There is much more to come! Building on the continued success of these discussions, the UKTGA is currently finalizing plans for its 2024 programme of learning and networking events. More information to follow!

UKTGA Conference - 29 November 2023

The UKTGA annual conference returns on Wednesday 29 November! We are delighted to have a great lineup for the day, with a range of interactive online sessions, led by local authority representatives, academics, town-gown practitioners, and many others. The full agenda (UKTGA Conference Agenda - November 2023) for the conference includes sessions from the Lord Mayor of Leeds, Cllr Al Garthwaite; Simon Merrywest, Director for the Student Experience at The University of Manchester; and Sharon Massingham, Business Crime Partnership Manager and Nightsafe Manager at Thames Valley Police.

The cost for the full-day conference is just £50.00 (including VAT). Registrations can be made by contacting, or calling Manchester Student Homes on 0161 275 7680.


UKTGA October webinar: A Distributive Leadership Approach to Community Engagement - 2-3pm, 26 October 2023

Join UKTGA for our October webinar:

A Distributive Leadership Approach to Community Engagement 

2-3pm Thursday 26 October, Zoom (registration details will be sent through UKTGA JISCmail)

Amanda Jackson, Social Impact Sustainability Manager - University of Leeds

Amanda joins us to discuss her work on CENTRE - the University of Leeds's new distributive leadership network guiding our institutional approach to community engagement (CE).  CENTRE brings together CE activity across the University, where the CENTRE’s members have a shared common purpose and are directly connected to faculty and students working at a grassroots level with local communities. This approach draws on the passion, experience, and enthusiasm of all those involved in community engagement and shares the responsibility among them. CENTRE is committed to taking a scholarly and evidence-based approach to community engagement to inform the design of community-engaged curricula; and a commitment to measuring impact, evaluation, and research of community engagement at the University of Leeds.

UKTGA August webinar: Harm reduction - 2-3pm, 17 August 2023

Join UKTGA for our August webinar:

Harm reduction

2-3pm on Thursday 17 August, Zoom (registration details will be sent through UKTGA JISCmail)

Tracy Lumb - Senior Project Manager – Wellbeing, Students Organising for Sustainability (SOS-UK)

Tracy Lumb joins us to discuss her work at SOS-UK on harm reduction approaches to student drug use. Tracy led the team that designed SOS-UK’s Drug & Alcohol Impact accreditation programme, which embeds social norms of responsible drinking on campuses and refocuses the conversation on drugs towards reducing harm. She has also been involved in the Universities UK (UUK) task force into student drug use.

UKTGA July webinar: Oxford House Champion Scheme - 1-2pm, 25 July 2023

Join UKTGA for our July webinar:

Oxford House Champion Scheme

1-2pm on Tuesday 25 July, Zoom (registration details will be sent through UKTGA JISCmail)

Andrea Siret - Head of Community Engagement at Oxford Brookes University

The House Champion Scheme implemented in Oxford has evolved since its inception by Oxford City Council in 2012. Now led by Oxford Brookes University the initiative remains a collaborative partnership with the core objectives to provide advice and guidance to students in private rented accommodation about being good neighbours and help them settle into their local area. Communicating to students in shared housing has always been a challenge. Find out more about what this scheme entails, how it has evolved and the new approaches we are exploring which helps compliment other initiatives to deliver key messages to students in a timely way.