Where are they now? The King Street Huts have a new lease of life!

4 May 2023

You may have noticed our summer huts have vanished and been replaced with some very smart giant umbrellas and picnic tables... but where are the huts now?

 As we work towards implementing a circular economy, we're very keen to reuse as much of our old set and materials as we can. We try to remember that what’s no longer needed here can feed another project elsewhere.  

Here are just three places who have made use of the huts for some very special reasons...

 Sparks Bristol

Sparks Bristol

The department store with a difference!

Co-created by Global Goals Centre and Artspace Lifespace, and designed by legendary creatives, Invisible Circus, Sparks Bristol is a vibrant, positive venue where visitors can explore what a greener, fairer and more creative future looks like.

This innovative hub opened this May in Broadmead’s old M&S building, breathing new life into the old place on a ‘meanwhile use’ basis until the site is redeveloped.

The Departments of Imagination is opening on the 10 June and will be found on the first floor, providing a space for creativity, community and innovation.

The Sparks team picked up two of our huts last month and are turning them into a workshop space which can be used by anyone who needs it.

Kathryn Chiswell Jones, Company Manager said: “We are delighted to have been offered the Beach Huts by Bristol Old Vic for the Department of Imagination at Sparks.  We created Sparks by using discarded office furniture, film and theatre sets, reducing waste and carbon emissions.

On the First Floor we will have two large hireable spaces, plus an open space suitable for residency community events such as public talks, free community workshops and art exhibitions. We also wanted to have a workshop space in the open plan area where people could have a bit more privacy for 1-2-1 meetings and use sewing machines to work on projects, so the two huts are being mashed together using donated and recycled materials to create a new workshop space available for the public to use from June 10th.” 

If you‘d like to find out more about this brilliant project or how you can help:  https://sparksbristol.co.uk

Redcatch Community Garden

Redcatch Community Garden

Redcatch Community Garden (RCG) was created by a group of passionate, local volunteers 6 years ago on the site of an old bowling green in Redcatch Park in Knowle. RCG is now a Charitable Community Benefit Society, rooted locally to benefit the whole community. RCG offers inclusive opportunities for everyone to learn, socialise, share skills and experiences, improve their physical and mental health and well-being and reduce isolation and loneliness. 

What do they do?

Redcatch Community Garden offer a welcoming community space and run a large range of workshops and sessions. These include educational visits for local school children, school holiday food and activity clubs for pupil premium families, children’s messy play, gardening, crafting and cookery. They employ Art Therapists who run Art Therapy for groups of children from local schools, those living with dementia and their family carers, Gardening for Wellbeing for those who have received a social prescription, adult employability and confidence building sessions and groups dedicated to children who identify as neurodiverse. 

They are a Community Hub and Welcome Space supporting our people in the Cost of Living Crisis. We run community events including pop up street food, markets and silent discos and much more. They grow, make and sell organic grown produce and products and educate visitors on our award winning gardening practices. 

What are they doing with the Hut?

Kate at Redcatch Community Garden said: "The hut is being repurposed by our volunteers as a playhouse in our play area. It is being repainted and reinforced and will have interactive play features inside. We are making a shade intension to it to protect children from the rain and sun. The donation came at the perfect time as we are revamping our play areas using a funding grant and this will mean our funding can go further to include other features."

 Find out more at www.redcatchcommunitygarden.com

BDP (Bristol Drugs Project)

BDP Allotment Project

Bristol Drugs Project (BDP) is a charity providing harm reduction and treatment services for people who are experiencing a negative relationship with drugs and/or alcohol. With 36 years of experience, their goal is to support people towards the changes they want to see in their lives no matter what they may be.

They have taken two of the King Street huts for use in their allotment project based in St Werburgh's.  The allotment provides a place for people BDP work with to connect with the outdoors. It provides new experiences, opportunities to connect with staff and peers, a chance to learn new skills and provide time away from their everyday lives.

“The well-being benefits of having hands in the soil, nurturing new growth and enjoying the fruits and vegetables of labour is so valuable. The allotment offers social connectivity as well as the fun and satisfaction of time spent outdoors.” Rachel Ayres, BDP Policy and Quality Development Lead

So finally, the garden sheds are actually being used as garden sheds!

If you want to find out more about BDP and their invaluable work, sign-up to receive our volunteer email notifications.

For more information about fundraising, volunteering or working with BDP, visit Get Involved - Bristol Drugs Project (bdp.org.uk) or telephone 0117 987 6011.

Did you know?

You might have noticed that we kept one of the sheds on King St because it has already been repurposed to become a greenhouse. 

The Community Greenhouse is a place for Bristol’s communities to experiment with new ways of working and connecting; to share stories and nurture ideas; to plant and grow sustainably and feed a circular economy.

Another project run by the Engagement and Heritage team! Learn more