London's largest public maker space opened in Barking and Dagenham with 3D printing and woodworking
PUBLISHED: 14:49 19 March 2019 | UPDATED: 14:49 19 March 2019
Every One Every Day
What’s believed to be London’s largest public maker space has opened in Barking and Dagenham.
The facility, which is free to all residents in the borough, includes 3D printing, wood working and manufacturing for textiles.
Run as part of the Every One Every Day (EOED) programme, the warehouse’s 3,300 square feet also has an industrial-sized kitchen, a public working area and ‘mini-makers’ for children to use.
“We want this to be seen like a public library, just with different resources,” said Tessy Britton, the founding chief executive of the charity that runs EOED, Participatory City.
She said the resources behind the project stand it apart from other places that offer ways to grow communities and work out of poverty.
“We’re trying to have a really big impact. People who live in Barking and Dagenham want to see it change and they want to be part of that change.
“They don’t want to just continue to look to the council and other service providers. They want to have a hand in it themselves. They want to be part of the solution that makes Barking and Dagenham a really great place for people to build in and to grow up in.”
A major way EOED is different is how decisions are made. There are no formal meetings to work out what gets done and what doesn’t.
In a process called ‘co-design’, residents come to the shops run by the programme and say what they want to do.
The limit of how far those projects are taken is based on their enthusiasm and commitment.
“The majority of projects that we take on or happen, the ideas originally come from residents,” said Wayne Trevor, a development director for the project.
He helps make sure that the shops, residents and their ideas get what they need so they can to do what they want to do.
“The fact that you’ve come up with the idea and you’re having the energy and enthusiasm—that is the decision-making process.
If you don’t have an idea but want to get involved, you can join one of the existing collectives.
The shops act as an entry point for people wanting to get involved. Residents can then work on what they want there or take it to one of the workshops EOED has around the borough.
The warehouse and its more serious equipment is billed as a place where ideas can be taken to the next level if residents want to.
By EOED’s count, 94 projects and three new (non-profit) businesses have been set up as a result of the programme.
The warehouse is at 47 Thames Road, check www.weareeveryone.org/the-warehouse for opening times.