Saturday, 16 December 2017

Regeneration from the roots up >>> "every community has the power to build a strong and secure future for itself" >>>

'Regeneration' can be an excuse for overdevelopment - and certainly for the sort of 'development' that no one really wants:
Futures Forum: Regenerating Exmouth seafront: "control of the process will remain with the Exmouth Regeneration Board "

- and for making all sorts of unfulfilled promises:
Futures Forum: Plans for Port Royal: anticipating a Regeneration Board >> budgeting for a 'renewal and resilience strategy'

On the other hand, there are truly inspiring regeneration projects:
Futures Forum: Place-making >>> prize-winning sustainable development ideas along the Cambridge-to-Oxford growth corridor >>>
Futures Forum: Regeneration of iconic seaside heritage >>> Hastings pier wins Stirling Prize

Up on the Somerset coast, very inspiring things have been happening these last five or so years:

Sep 29, 2014

Onion Collective are a social enterprise CIC, based in Watchet, Somerset. They are enabling their community and working to make their town stronger by building a new development of community workshops and studios, a gallery, a makerspace, cafe and performance space on a vacant quayside location.

UnLtd - The Onion Collective win Power to Change film contest
Onion Collective « Locality

From the Onion Collective:

We believe that every community has the power to build a strong and secure future for itself. Times have changed, and it is no longer possible to rely on local authorities to ensure community sustainability.

We help communities build a plan for their hometown and we help them to deliver it. That plan includes a process of asking what is needed, defining shared community priorities and then helping to ensure success whether it is a major capital build or revenue projects. This process has proven to be transformative.

Regeneration from the roots up enables communities to feel that they are instrumental in making where they live the place they want it to be. It nurtures pride, tackles loneliness, gives a sense of purpose and belief. We work with communities to help make them the best versions of themselves.

Onion Collective

With some specific projects:

Onion Collective | East Quay Work Foundry

Invisible Studio Architects | Onion Collective

Invisible Studio Architects | Onion Collective

And finally from a piece in the Guardian last week:

With its silent marshes and gorgeous cream teas, Porlock is a haven for the old, prosperous, content: a paean to the past. But Watchet, an engaging harbour town with a population of 4,000, 10 miles east of Minehead, may point a way forward. In 2013, a group of locals founded Onion Collective, to help regenerate the town and provide jobs. Their aim was to create a place where they could bring up their children, and where those children would have everything they needed if they wanted to stay.

Naomi Griffith, a director of Onion Collective, grew up in west Somerset, where her parents ran a zoo, but left when she was 18. “Like pretty well everyone who grows up here, I wanted to escape as soon as possible,” she says. “As a teenager, it’s not very exciting.” After a decade away – studying in London, travelling in South America and working as a teacher and event manager – she came home. “I wanted to live somewhere where there was a sense of community, and that definitely does exist in west Somerset.” What doesn’t exist is jobs. “If you’re a woman who wants to be there for your children, but also wants to have a decent job, you haven’t got a hope in hell.”

She and her co-founders opened a visitor centre in Watchet, helped art galleries get off the ground and encouraged microbusinesses and creative industries to move in. “We are seeking to create the kind of vibe and opportunity that exists in Bristol,” Griffith says. The group is developing a site next to the harbour, and hoping to get funding for a bigger gallery, workshops and a cafe. It is also doing a feasibility study to try to establish an industry that could sustain hundreds of jobs in the area, to replace the paper mill that used to employ 170 people before it closed 18 months ago. “We are trying to think what a new industry would look like,” Griffith says. “Something that will employ a couple of hundred people and last for a hundred years.”

'Older people have pulled up the ladder': inside England's oldest and youngest towns | Inequality | The Guardian

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