The ICL research project is working with two place based partners, one (Knowle West Media Centre) based in the area of Knowle West, South Bristol. Together we are working with Filwood Broadway Working Group (FBWG), which is a resident-led group working to ensure a community voice in the regeneration of Filwood Broadway, an area in Knowle West. FBWG meetings are currently organised by the Knowle West Alliance.
Through initial cross-pollination workshops, we established that FBWG wanted to get more local residents involved in their work and to influence the local Council’s plans for the area, who have some funding for the Filwood Broadway regeneration. The ICL research team worked with FBWG to devise a pilot project. The group decided to experiment with holding a regular stall at Filwood market, which takes place on the first Saturday of month, over the next year. The plan is to use the stall as a space to have conversations about the future of Filwood Broadway and to get more local people actively involved with the activities of the group.
On Saturday 1st May, the group ran their first market stall at Filwood Market, which took place on Filwood Broadway, on the green opposite the Filwood Community Centre. It was the first market since the lockdown restrictions in 2021 were lifted and the sun was shining, so there was a real positive energy on the day. The stall worked well, with many volunteers that came to help and people walking up to talk to the team to find out what the stall was about and have discussions.
The group focused on collecting feedback on a housing development proposed for the area, which the Council was consulting on as part of a planning application. The FBWG had created a questionnaire which they used to have conversations with local residents and capture their views. The group noticed that not many people had heard about this development and the market stall was a good way of sharing this with local people and collecting their opinions. Filwood Community Centre (a member of FBWG) helped to draw people to the FBWG stall as they had a fun activities stall opposite, so parents could entertain their children whilst they had a chat with volunteers from the group.
FBWG identified that signage was an aspect to work on before the June market to help give the group a clearer identity and clarity of who the stall is run by when people pass-by. They are now working with a local graphic designer to create a pull-up banner for their stall. For future stall engagements, the group will be inviting associated initiatives from Knowle West to be on their market stall, providing opportunities for broadening and connecting discussions about the future of Filwood Broadway. Thus developing a wider support network to keep the project going.
written by Lorraine Hudson, Emily Smith & Vera Hale