Company Drinks is no stranger to working without having a building. Between our start in 2014 and 2017 we were nomadic, and hosted all our activities from the local libraries, parks and community centres, such as Valence House and the Park Centre. In 2017 we moved into our first ever home, the then disused Outdoor Bowls Club in Barking Park. With help from a crowdfunder campaign to raise money for basic renovations and kitchen equipment, we were able to bring the Bowls Club back to life in no time, and have shared many happy memories with our groups, volunteers, local residents and partners from across the UK since.
Last year we were able to raise infrastructual funding with support from LBBD, and were awarded a SCIL grant, which now allows us to make more substantial changes to the building. We will now be finally able to make our home fully accessible to everyone in Barking and Dagenham. This week we begin on site; with new DDA access and facilities, ramps, a better heating system throughout the building (allowing us to use it year-round), and better working shared spaces for us and the different groups using the building for educational, creative and horticultural activities.
We hope to be reopened and safely sharing the space again in Spring 2021, so watch this space. In the meantime, the Grow Club will be continuing with looking after the garden and ensuring the plants and wildlife don’t notice any disruption!