University of Chester

University Centre Shrewsbury (UCS) opened in 2014, aiming to provide unprecedented opportunities for students in the local community. It is part of a partnership between the University of Chester and Shropshire Council (municipality), who are working in collaboration to deliver an exceptional Higher Education experience in Shrewsbury.

We aim to be different to many other universities in the UK because, working alongside local and national business, courses are taught by high level practicing professionals with a renowned reputation for the quality of their work. This will help students become a different type of graduate; one that is highly employable, highly innovative and enterprising and who has a rounded and valuable student experience.

In partnership with the Community Enablement Team we aim to be responsive to the needs of the County, acting as a catalyst for economic growth and seeking to maximise the potential, nationally and internationally, of the County, its citizens and its businesses. The focus of our curriculum and community activity is based around the following themes, designed to address challenges faced by the County over the years ahead.

One of the most significant challenges facing Shropshire is its rapidly ageing population. Shropshire is a rural county and today, 25.8% of the local population is made up of over 65s (compared to an average of 16.5% across the UK). It is estimated that by 2031, that figure for Shropshire will rise to 37.3%.


The Senior Social Entrepreneuring project is therefore very closely aligned to the objectives of our organisation and Shropshire as a whole. Our project team reflects a range of interests and expertise to support this agenda:

Jon Britten (Project Lead)

Jon has many years experience in project management, business and entrepreneurship. He currently leads on the delivery of the Sustainable Business & Community Development agenda for UCS, along with oversight of academic quality and support across all of our degree programmes.

Keith Chandler

Keith has significant experience in adult education, further education and higher education spreading over 30 years. He has worked on a number of European projects aimed at delivering social and cultural impact.

David Clarke

David has a role in the oversight of academic quality and support services at UCS. He has experience in the development and delivery of curriculum, including adult lifelong learning programmes, and community engagement and outreach within higher education and local authority.

Steven Markham

Steven has considerable experience in many IT, technical support, programming and management roles. He has worked on several European projects and has developed graphics and web platforms as well as producing videos and music for them.