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Sharing digital knowledge

07 March 2005


An NHS health trust and a five-a-side football venue are the latest to sign up for help from the University of Teesside's Digital Knowledge Exchange.

The Tees and North-East Yorkshire NHS Trust would like to improve access to its web site, using a combination of words, signs and symbols to improve accessibility, particularly for those with learning disabilities.

And Soccer Sensations, based at Preston Farm in Stockton, is looking to revolutionise bookings with the aid of digital technology. The company, launched seven years ago, currently has ten floodlit five a-side soccer pitches and is used by 350 teams every week.

They are planning to open new centres in Hartlepool and Darlington and turned to the University for help in developing an online database and booking system to help manage the facilities and football leagues and allow customers to view availability via the Web.

John Kerr, Public Relations Manager for the NHS trust, said some of their patients have learning difficulties or other disabilities which make printed information leaflets of little use.

” We are keen to work with the University to develop greater access to information about our services, particularly by expanding our website. We serve an area with a population of 800,000 and have a staff of 3,500 working across 65 sites. So anything we can do to improve communications, both with staff and service users, will be a great help," he said.

Mr Tim Brunton, project manager of the Digital Knowledge Exchange, said: “We were launched last year with support from the Higher Education Innovation Fund with the aim of helping both private companies and large public bodies gain maximum benefit from advances in digital technology and make their web presence accessible to everyone. Our work with the NHS and Soccer Sensations are two examples of how we are making a direct contribution to people’s lives in the North-East.”

For further information about the Digital Knowledge Exchange contact Tim Brunton on 01642 384300 or e-mail

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