Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £10,001 to £25,000


Creative Workspace is a community arts centre and rehearsal space in Withywood, South Bristol run by Brave Bold Drama CIC. It is our biggest project to date and we are seeking support for it to continue.

Creative Workspace has been open since May 2017 and we have steadily built a healthy audience amongst the BS13 community which is ever-growing. We have secured project funding from Arts Council England and the Bristol City Council Community Investment Programme to deliver a variety of community arts projects for everyone from pre-school children and their carers, primary and secondary school students, adults with learning disabilities, women and older people.

Our footfall is steadily increasing as we provide a safe, friendly space for all members of the community to gather, meet, engage with the arts and explore their own creativity. In Sept 2018 two local residents set up a community cafe within Creative Workspace open 4 days a week. As a result of this, we are able to overlay even more creative offers to the community who visit our cafe each week. This includes creative sessions designed specifically for preschoolers and for older people.

Currently, apart from the rent, we do not have the remaining overhead of keeping the building open secured. We are having to assign all revenue that is raised by hiring the main studio as rehearsal space to cover our overheads. This means that the two active directors of the company have, since opening the building in May 2017, been working almost entirely on a voluntary basis.

We propose to use this funding to secure our remaining overheads for a year. We have every confidence that in the next two years we will secure ongoing corporate sponsorship to cover our overhead costs. If we are successful in this bid, it would provide us with much needed financial respite and enable us to focus more of our energies on securing a corporate sponsor so that we become less reliant on grant funding in the future.

We also propose to use this fund to purchase equipment for a pop-up cinema at Creative Workspace. We already have a community film licence until 2019 and have scope from our income to renew this to 2020. Pop-up family film screenings are one of the most popular kinds of community events we run, but currently we are managing with a domestic standard low-level projector, a piece of cloth nailed to the wall and an inadequate PA system. If we had better quality equipment, we could offer far more film screenings not just for a family audience but also offer early evening film screenings for teenagers, who could be given the opportunity to curate the film programme themselves. We would also like to offer film screenings for older people, as well as single-parent friendly screenings with a creche facility, as we know from working so closely in the community of BS13 that accessing film screenings can be a particular challenge for these community groups due to costs and the location of cinemas.

Finally we propose that some of this funding secures a salary covering one day a week for one year for both active directors. Both already working at least 3-4 days per week full time on no pay, and this is obviously unsustainable in the long term, and puts us under considerable personal pressure. We are extremely keen to continue to develop Creative Workspace as a vital community hub in one of the most socially and culturally deprived wards of Bristol. Once we have secured corporate sponsorship for our overheads, our revenue from theatre hires can begin to cover our salaries, but until then we require some support in order to be able to continue the important work we have begun at Creative Workspace.

Brave Bold Drama Community Interest Company

Moment of Pride

Creative Workspace has made incredible progress in its first year and is wanted and loved by the community it serves, because they tell us so! We are passionate about ensuring that Creative Workspace remains a sustainable community arts project as we continue to serve even members of our community.

Location: Queens Road, Bristol, UK