£12,500 goal to transform Barking Pavilion into community drinks kitchen

PUBLISHED: 14:15 12 July 2017 | UPDATED: 14:15 12 July 2017

Happy faces at a blackcurrant-picking event. PICTURE: Company Drinks

Happy faces at a blackcurrant-picking event. PICTURE: Company Drinks


The company behind BAD Cola and Going Picking afternoons is hoping to raise £12,500 in just a month to create a new home in the Barking Pavilion.

The Barking PavilionThe Barking Pavilion

Community enterprise Company Drinks has become a well-loved part of the borough, and has been given a 10-year lease by the council to help keep the tradition of hopping and fruit-picking alive in east London.

However, the old pavilion has been empty for three years, and badly needs renovation to bring it up scratch.

Hence Company Drinks, is hoping that some of the thousands of people who have taken part in their picking trips and activities might be able to give a little back to help install a new production kitchen - so they can make more delicious drinks - and to upgrade the building so it can be open year-round for more community events.

The Kickstarter campaign to raise £12,500 began yesterday, and offers a range of rewards for those who donate, from free drinks, T-shirts, and mini drinks hampers.

Company founder Kathrin Böhm said: “After three years of nomadic existence, it is the perfect timing for Company Drinks to set up a permanent home. £12,500 is a lot of money, so we’re really hoping that the local and Kickstarter communities get behind us.

Over the years, over 2,400 local residents have come to one of our workshops, or picking trips and we’ve engaged 36,000 worldwide.

“This is our chance to increase our impact in Barking & Dagenham. We’ve put together some really unique and delicious rewards which we hope will take us to our target.”

Violet Charlton, one of Company Drinks’ regulars, said: “Hop picking in the past was one of the best things in the best years of my life. Now it’s Company Drinks!”

It is hoped that once it has been refurbished, the pavilion can be used as a straining space and also a social venue, and Company Drinks aspires to make the green outdoor spaces around better too.

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