Our aims and objectives, impact on the ground and how we operate as a federation of charities.
The main themes of our work and some of our most important initiatives.
What we can do for the wide range of people and organisations that we work with.
Find out the latest about how we're changing places and lives.
Further your career or help us make a difference.
How to contact our team
In the recession of the early 1980s, the environment and social
cohesion of many parts of the UK was under threat. The collapse of
traditional industries with associated environmental degradation
and conflict within communities called for a new response.
Groundwork was born out of a competition for local authorities
won by St Helens. ‘Operation Groundwork’ was described by the then
Environment Secretary Michael Heseltine as ‘an entrepreneurial
team, which could act independently as an enabler to mobilise all
the resources in the community - public, private and
The first Groundwork Trust was so successful that areas around
the country applied to duplicate the experiment.
Over the following decades, we expanded geographically and also
our work became more diverse as each Trust responded to local
circumstances and innovated.
We’re now a federation of charities with a membership based on a
mixture of local Trusts and regional organisations, with Groundwork
UK acting as a national voice and co-ordinator. From small
beginnings in St Helens, we now work across English regions, Wales
and Northern Ireland and there are a number of Groundwork
projects in Europe, Japan and the USA.
Groundwork Northern Ireland was set up in 1991 and delivers
environmental improvements in areas of need throughout Northern
Ireland and in the border counties of the Republic of Ireland. The
focus is to work in areas of disadvantage where the peace process
is at its most fragile – working in partnership with communities to
regenerate hearts, minds and places. We aim to use environmental
regeneration to engage with and motivate people to improve their
quality of life. Our commitment to regeneration and peace building
was demonstrated, when, in 2004, the Trust relocated to its present
location in an interface area of North Belfast.