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New Victoria team help Lifeshare to bring Christmas cheer to Manchester’s homeless

The team behind Muse’s New Victoria development came to the rescue of a Manchester homeless charity by offering facilities, food and a raft of support to make sure the charity’s ‘at risk’ annual Christmas Project went ahead.

Muse, VINCI Construction UK and Pension Insurance Corporation plc came together with Lifeshare, Manchester’s oldest charity that supports homeless and vulnerable people in the city, to provide the location for its Christmas Project, food, volunteers and a series of other much needed resources.

Lifeshare’s Christmas Project has run for 34 years and offers homeless people and those in crisis a place to find hot meals, companionship, medical and personal care, shower facilities, veterinary care and other amenities with the aim of reducing isolation and bringing people together over the Christmas period.

During covid 2020, the service was drastically cut down for safety reasons, and last year Lifeshare was struggling to find a location suitable.

Simon Hourihan, project director at Muse Developments said: “It’s great that facilities at New Victoria were put to such a worthwhile use over the Christmas period. As soon as we heard about this fantastic initiative, we wanted to get involved and help however we could. We’ve had a brilliant response from the whole team, who have come together to raise more than £4,000 to fund food and other supplies.”

Matt Legg, VINCI’s project manager for the New Victoria scheme, said: “We’d been chatting with Lifeshare since VINCI started on the New Victoria scheme – wondering how we could help a local based service. After hearing the possibility that the Christmas Project might not go ahead, it just dawned on us that our construction shuts down for Christmas and all the staff welfare buildings were free and available!”

Judith Vickers, operations manager at Lifeshare, said: “We cannot explain how amazing this donation is. I was really starting to panic that we had no location to hold this year’s Christmas Project – a scheme that helps so many people at what is one of the worst times of the year if you’re on the streets.

“We owe a lot to VINCI and the other parties involved – Muse Developments and Pension Insurance Corporation.”

The team is currently on site with the 450,000 sq ft residential phase of New Victoria, which will bring forward 520 homes over two 20 and 25-storey buildings at a central location next to Manchester Victoria station.

The partners who helped to make Lifeshare’s Christmas Project happen at the New Victoria residential development included: VINCI Construction UK, Muse Developments, PIC, Chroma, Walker Sime, ARUP, HAALO and WSP.