This is a proposal for a visitable space where, with other partners (for example, through Norwich Eco Hub), local people can come for the following:
Possitopian workshops, using creative ways to discuss and dream up a possible place. How can Norwich become a more regenerative and resilient city? The space will offer resources and tested formats to allow dreams to be turned into reality.
Browsing a resource bank of games, books, toolkits, handling objects and creative materials, building on an existing collection (e.g. library of 260 books). Users can browse, get briefings and take toolkits away to run their own activations elsewhere. These materials will also be used for a diverse range of workshops in the space, such as Climate Games Nights, an Eco Book Club, and Wearable Art workshops.
Experience and create installations of art, craft and visual ideas:
- Some space might be for local artists, or activist groups to hire and curate changing displays
- Display space for ideas generated from workshops,
- Semi-permanent display to explain the space, its partners and core ideas about Norwich and its past and future.
Hold their own gatherings, for organising movements, for education, and for therapeutic and creative conversations, design workshops for eco-innovations, or consultants giving advice on energy efficiency or retrofitting. There might be space for hot-desking or one-to-one consultations. (Hire for a fee.)
Buy merchandise such as books, upcycled garments, craft tools, art prints, eco-stationery, hand-made toiletries etc: which will help cover costs in an ethical way.
Access materials about Norwich, its ecology and heritage, to inform conversations about planning, and to capture the history of research and activism in the City. Materials to support the growing and regeneration of nature and planet-kind lifestyles. Noticeboard / leaflets about e.g. allotments / farmshares / co-living / transport schemes. (Invite Norwich Preservation Trust, Norwich Churches Trust, Norwich Society, link to Norfolk Record Office & Norfolk Museums Service, City Council etc to share materials.)
Potential also for a Library of Things and maker space (e.g. sewing machines, printers, plastic extruder) in partnership with other organisations.
A semi-permanent space could be possible with the following tactics:
- subsidised rent for an under-used or ‘meanwhile’ space
- sharing costs with other groups and enterprises
- semi-commercial model e.g. selling space for hire, charging for workshops/courses, selling publications/art/eco-things, combined with funding / crowdfunding
- delivering contracts from the space e.g. for Norwich Climate Commission or charities
- Ethical, commons-oriented finance and governance would be important. Sponsorship by fossil fuel companies would be ruled out.