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Posts Tagged ‘making’

Success for The Factory in Skills & Opportunities fund

We are delighted to announce that Knowle West Media Centre has been awarded a share of NatWest’s £2.5 million Skills and Opportunities Fund.

We have been awarded £23,965 to provide workshops at our training and making space KWMC The Factory. These workshops will support 120 people, particularly those currently under-represented in enterprise, to develop the skills and knowledge to thrive in the manufacturing and making industries.

KWMC is one of three organisations selected in the South West, alongside I Can Do That CIC in Torquay and West Devon Business Information Point in Okehampton. The Skills & Opportunities Fund ‘supports organisations in disadvantaged communities that help people develop, create, or access the skills and opportunities they need to get into work or start a business.’ Charities, not-for-profit organisations and state-funded schools and colleges can apply for up to £35,000 each for a specific project from the fund.

Oliver Watts, Chairman of NatWest’s South West and Wales Regional Board, said: “It was a challenging decision because of the standard of entries we received. But the panel felt that all of the organisations would make a massive impact in their local communities.”

We know that satisfaction with local jobs is very low in our area – around 12% in the latest neighbourhood statistical report – and this funding will enable us to support more people to explore the possibilities of self-employment. Over the next few months we’ll be delivering a range of skills development workshops in digital fabrication, prototyping and product design, and we’re looking forward to supporting more local people, from all backgrounds, to make it in business.

A huge thank you to everyone who voted for KWMC in the public vote and helped to spread the word about our programme.  Watch this space for more information…

If you’d like to register your interest in the ‘Making it in Business’ workshops please contact Justin Ricks on 0117 903 0444 or justin.ricks@kwmc.org.uk

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2016 Workshop Programme

We’re in the process of planning a programme of practical workshops for our digital making space KWMC The Factory, ranging from basic carpentry to digital design and manufacturing using laser cutters and CNC equipment.

If you’re interested in a manufacturing workshop please contact Justin Ricks to register your interest. We’d be keen to hear if there are specific workshops you’d be interested in accessing from our exciting new making centre.

Take a look at some of the things we’ve made at The Factory since it opened last year…

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The Factory gives Meningitis Research Foundation a helping hand

Earlier this month the team at our digital manufacturing space KWMC: The Factory teamed up with law firm Veale Wasbrough Vizards (VWV) and Collecteco to provide the Meningitis Research Foundation (MRF) with upgraded furniture for its new office in central Bristol.

VWV donated surplus furniture and Collecteco assisted MRF in acquiring 38 desks from PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Southampton office, as part of their work to redistribute furniture and other equipment to good causes.

As the desks were too wide for the planned space, Collecteco put MRF in touch with KWMC: The Factory, based at Filwood Green Business Park.

Our team were able to remanufacture the desks to the right specification, ensuring that the Meningitis Research Foundation have everything they need for their big move.  We wish them well in their new home!

For more details about how KWMC: The Factory could work with your business contact Justin or call 0117 903 0444.

Image: Meningitis Research Foundation

Office furniture from VW

Turn your ‘junk’ into gems this Black Friday

As Black Friday dawns and Christmas shoppers start the hunt for gifts at bargain prices, a group of artists are encouraging people to breathe new life into old toys – rather than throwing them away to make room for new ones.

Over the last few months we’ve been collaborating with artists Ludic Rooms have been touring the streets of Knowle West with a toy trike, collecting unwanted toys and games and recording the stories behind them.

We discovered that, a month before Christmas, many people take stock of their toys and games, throwing old ones away to make room for the new gifts they’re buying or expecting. Items are often in a useable condition or can be easily mended.

With funding from the Bristol 2015 Neighbourhood Arts Programme for Green Capital year, we ran a number of ‘toy hacks’ where children and families worked with artists and technologists to make new toys and games from the donated items, transforming them into something that everyone could enjoy.

A broken garage for toy cars became a wildlife haven as it was remodelled as the Minibeast Hotel. A solitary bike wheel and some wooden beams came together to form a balance board.  Hundreds of broken character toys and fast food freebies were reborn as new exciting action figures.

Working with Ludic Rooms we’ve also produced a series of short films recommending simple and affordable ways to recycle old toys. These will be launched online on 27th November – to coincide with Black Friday.

Melissa Mean, Head of our Arts Programme, said: “There’s another side to Black Friday: as well as the shopping and buying, lots of toys and games are discarded that could easily be transformed into something new. We hope The Forgotten Toys project will encourage people to see “junk” in a different way and try out our easy and fun ways to reuse old toys. If we just use our imagination, we can reduce the amount we needlessly send to landfill, bring people together, and create something playful and fun in the process.”

Dom Breadmore from Ludic Rooms said: “We’ve been really inspired by the stories and playful memories of the people we’ve met whilst out on the toy trike in Knowle West. We’re really hoping that this project will inspire families to look again at the toys that we all consider throwing away to see the forgotten play potential in these objects – often beyond how they were intended to be used. The only limit is our collective imagination.”

Watch the films on Facebook from 27th November.

For more information visit www.forgotten.toys or contact KWMC on 0117 903 0444.

Can you spot the Bedminster elves?

Mystery and making are coming to the streets of Bedminster and Southville this Christmas, as a troupe of elves pop up in unexpected places…

100 elves, decorated by primary school children and an artist, will be hidden in windows, trees and around the streets for people to find from Saturday 28 November. The Elf Takeover is coordinated by Bedminster Town Team, who have been working with us, artist Russ Henry of Hot Soup House and a local primary school to bring some locally made magic to the streets.

For two weeks in November our digital manufacturing space became a Santa’s workshop, with the cutting and sanding of 100 wooden elves.

Our team then supported 60 six year olds from St Peter’s CofE Primary School in Bishopsworth to design and decorate their own elves. The sessions were part of our new education programme for schools, Maker Lab in a Box, which offers opportunities for schoolchildren to experiment with digital manufacturing and new technologies, try out the latest making tools, and explore careers in the industry.

Artist Russ Henry designed 40 elves to complete the troupe.

The Elf Takeover is run by Bedminster Town Team and will feature four properties – The Elf and Safety Office, Elf Hotel, Santa’s Mailroom and the Elf Workshop – and each of the properties will be interactive, featuring voice activated experiences, lighting effects and falling snow. Several elves will be accompanied by ‘sElfie sticks’, so people can capture the moment.

To find out more about the Bedminster Elves visit their Facebook page.

For more details about making at KWMC contact Justin. For details of our schools’ programme contact Penny.

 

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KWMC: The Factory receives Bristol enterprise award

KWMC: The Factory has been recognised for its contribution to training and manufacturing in Bristol, in an awards ceremony celebrating young craftsmen and women at the Lord Mayor’s Mansion House.

The Guild of Guardians presented its prestigious Alfred Telling Award to our new digital manufacturing enterprise on Thursday 15th October 2015. The annual award provides a bursary of £1,500 for an entrepreneur starting their own business in a manual trade in the Bristol area.

KWMC: The Factory was nominated by BRAVE, a not-for-profit business support organisation that has helped thousands of entrepreneurs start and run successful ventures.

Located in Knowle West, an area where satisfaction with local jobs is very low – just 12% in the last Bristol City Council Quality of Life survey (2013) – KWMC: The Factory aims to bring together artists, makers and local people and open up access to digital manufacturing technologies, such as CNC machines and laser cutters.

From two units at the new Filwood Green Business Park, KWMC: The Factory manufactures a range of products from recycled and sustainable materials and provides in-demand skills training for volunteers, businesses and schools. It also connect with other creative centres in the city, such as Pervasive Media Studio, to assist in the prototyping and development of new products.

The enterprise developed out of a pilot scheme run by KWMC and local charity re:work from the empty Eagle House Youth Centre in Knowle West. Between October 2014 and May 2015 their ‘pop up’ enterprise produced nearly 500 pieces of furniture to kit out Filwood Green Business Park, in a commission from building contractors MIDAS and Bristol City Council.

This summer KWMC moved manufacturing activity into Filwood Green Business Park and KWMC: The Factory was born. To date, they have provided 40 people with training in using digital manufacturing equipment.

Liz Sands, Director of BRAVE, said: “We are delighted to have nominated KWMC: The Factory for this prestigious award. It’s a very deserving winner and we have followed its development closely from the beginning. We hope this award helps to raise the profile of KWMC: The Factory and its cutting-edge digital manufacturing techniques and training.”

Justin Ricks, our Business Development Manager, commented: “We’re delighted to receive the Alfred Telling Award for our inclusive and environmentally friendly approach to manufacturing. Digital fabrication is fundamentally changing the way people make things – and we want to ensure that these technologies are available to the many, not just the few, and that they can be utilised to make things that are sustainable, attractive and innovative. The award from the Guild of Guardians will enable us to purchase more equipment for use by volunteer groups who come to us for training.”

For information about KWMC: The Factory please contact Justin on 0117 903 0444.

An Annual General Meeting with a difference

We invite you to attend an Annual General Meeting with a difference…This year we’re celebrating the opening of the Eagle House Pop-Up Furniture Factory – a temporary community making space in the heart of Knowle West – and we’d love to welcome you.

When: Wednesday 19th November
Where: Eagle House Pop Up Furniture Factory & Eagle House Social Club, Newquay Road, Knowle West

From 3pm you can take a guided tour of the Pop Up Factory, meet some of the people working there, and see products being made. You can also try your hand at making your own product.

The official business of our Annual General Meeting (AGM) will start at 6pm, next door at the Eagle House Social Club. There you can experiment with technologies and apps, meet the KWMC team, and find out more about our future plans.

We hope you can join us to celebrate the year and explore opportunities for the future.

Please feel free to drop in to the Pop Up Factory Open Day whenever you like.  If you’re able to attend the AGM from 6pm we’d be grateful if you could RSVP to rachel.clarke@kwmc.org.uk or call 0117 903 0444.

We look forward to seeing you then!

Call for artist/maker for new furniture commission

As part of our new Eagle House Pop-Up Furniture Factory, Knowle West Media Centre is seeking an artist/maker for a new commission to re-imagine, re-design and re-make redundant office furniture into something more beautiful, useful and sustainable.

The commission runs from November 2014 to February 2015.

To find out more please download the brief The Beauty Within Call for Commissions or contact Melissa Mean on 07984 745 175 or melissa.mean@kwmc.org.uk

The deadline for applications is 12 noon on 31st October 2014.

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Residents help to ‘Make the Neighbourhood’

On Saturday 21st June sixty people came to our Make Your Neighbourhood event to see the exciting things happening in Knowle West – and join in.

Activities included designing signs for Knowle West, making things out of recycled materials, our mobile tattoo parlour collecting local tattoos and their stories, and making fresh apple juice with Re:Work‘s apple pressing machine. The clear favourite for many were the bike rides from local new business and all ability cycling hub A Ride in the Park. This business was supported by the Do What You Love programme.

The stall by Knowle West Health Association & Bramble Farm sold out of locally grown veg, while many noises of approval could be heard from people tasting bread baked by local business Bread Club. Other  highlights included the My Knowle West app and the future map of Jarmans, made by Joe Kelly, an Architecture and Planning student on a placement with us.

As part of Big Green Week we also conducted tours of the building, and everyone enjoyed finding out about the history of KWMC and the environmental aspects of our building.

Amanda Ramsay, who ran a stall at the event about Knowle West Futures, said: “We were really pleased. We spoke to lots of local people that we had not met before, and we signed up some new members to our group.”

We are also pleased that one of the local businesses recruited a new volunteer – and six people came along who had never taken part in an event like this before! Thanks to everyone who came, on what was a scorcher of a day. To find out about future events visit the Events section.

A video about the event will be up soon.

Jodie’s story

“A weekly Knowle West sewing group is looking for more women to join in and earn money doing something they enjoy. Earlier this year I saw a leaflet for an event called ‘Sew Clever’, and I thought ‘bonus: there’s a crèche at Knowle West Children’s Centre!’ It was half term, so I was keen to go along and have a few hours to myself.

I met a lovely sewing tutor, Julie Ellison, who showed us how to make tote bags out of recycled banners. Julie explained the enterprise idea: make bags and sell them at Arnolfini. The bags are selling so well that she needs help to make more – an opportunity for the makers to earn some extra money. You can make up to £5 per bag: £1.50 for cutting the outline shape and £3.50 for sewing it together.

This has developed into a weekly group through the “Do What You Love” programme, which is a partnership between Knowle West Media Centre and re:work. I went along to the group because I enjoy sewing and being creative and my children were in nursery and school at the time, so it was a perfect opportunity for me.”

(Jodie Gardner)

Contact Us

Knowle West Media Centre
Leinster Avenue
Knowle West
Bristol
BS4 1NL
+44 (0) 117 903 0444
enquiries@kwmc.org.uk

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