Here’s some background on Bradford One Community Group…..
WHAT IS BRADFORD ONE?
A newly launched community interest group seeking to take the Save the Odeon campaign on to the next level by organising and overseeing the redevelopment of this much loved building at the heart of Bradford.
They aim to do this by engaging and involving the people of Bradford throughout the process.
Ultimately the aim is an economically viable venue with an assured future. They are ordinary Bradfordians with no vested interests other than that they care about the building, about Bradford and its future.
They’ve chosen a community benefit vehicle, similar to a co-operative, which will include an asset lock on the site so that it will remain in the ownership of the people of Bradford.
WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS?
The Bradford Odeon is clearly important to local people as the long running campaign to save it has demonstrated. Alongside organisations such as the Bradford Odeon Rescue Group BORG (who I’ll be featuring soon), the voice of the community has played a massive role in ensuring that the initial plans for demolition and re-development as New Victoria Place were rejected.
The Bradford One group includes campaigners who met through the fight to save the building, via online and offline activities. Their aim is to now transform this campaign into a constructive way of securing a solution with as much input from the people of Bradford as possible.
They believe that a redeveloped Odeon that retains the essential characteristics of the building will have far reaching benefits for Bradford city centre and the wider district, drawing people back into Bradford and helping to show what Bradford and its people really have to offer. It will complement perfectly the area around Centenary Square with the Alhambra, Media Museum and City Park.
WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS?
To create a multi-purpose cultural venue and a home for creative entrepreneurs.
It will include a modern, well-equipped auditorium for mid-scale touring live acts and events surrounded by managed workspace, learning facilities and co-working spaces to encourage collaboration and innovation.
Incorporating restaurants, café-bars and independent retail outlets will help to make Bradford One a sustainable proposition in the heart of Bradford city centre.
WHAT CAN PEOPLE DO TO GET INVOLVED?
Initially, They plan to engage with the community in two ways:
A consultation exercise to let the people of Bradford decide what happens to the building
A community share issue to let the people of Bradford take ownership of the building – shares will be available at a very low cost and will give you voting rights
This will very much be a community led process at each stage, with the ultimate aim being a renovated building everyone can enjoy.
The public needs to demonstrate their support as this will strengthen the campaign.
You can register your interest now on the website www.bradfordone.com
HOW WILL YOU FUND THIS?
A mixture of sources, including:
- public funding through issuing shares to the public
- grants, gifts and donations and community funding
- investor funding and loans
ARE THEY MEMBERS OF BORG?
No, they are a separate group to BORG, although they have shared a common aim with them in their campaigns to save the building.
WHO DO YOU PLAN TO WORK WITH?
All interested parties.
Nothing is ruled out at this stage and they’re exploring all possible options as to funding, developers, tenants and use of the spaces around the main auditorium.
They want to engage the people of Bradford throughout the whole process – as a community led group they want to listen to and reflect the wishes of the community.
One of Bradford’s best resources is its people and they believe that giving the people a voice and a choice is the best way forward to work towards the renovation of the building and the regeneration of Bradford city centre.
WHAT’S THE NEXT STEP?
Now the group has been formed they can start to explore the various funding opportunities available at different stages.
First of all they will formally examine the viability of the scheme and put together a business planTheyWe also plan to pursue funding for a feasibility study.
They will continue to liaise closely with Bradford Council and the Homes and Communities Agency (who currently own the building) and look forward to the completion of the structural survey Bradford Council have agreed to provide for all interested parties.
This will be an open process, and they encourage and welcome the involvement of the people of Bradford.
Love Bradford…Love The Odeon