Boosting support for enterprising people in South Wales Valleys, Dundee, Stoke and Brighton

We’re launching support for people committed to transforming the places they live in, funded by People’s Innovation Trust. The four areas we’ll be supporting together are Crumlin & the South Wales Valleys, Stoke-on-Trent, Dundee and Brighton, made possible by players of People’s Postcode Lottery. 

In our view local people are uniquely well-placed to create change in their area because they deeply understand the problems facing their communities, and the solutions that will work. To reach their potential these social leaders need access to resources, connections beyond their own networks and the trust and backing of local institutions. We will be working with deeply committed people in these areas to come up with lasting solutions to problems that matter to local communities.

Each area was chosen because it is already showing evidence of energy and social leadership:

Dundee’s post-industrial reinvention to a vibrant and global city masks underlying challenges for many residents, including high youth unemployment and food bank usage. Local social entrepreneurs have solutions, such as The Circle, a hub where charities, social enterprises, community groups and socially aware businesses collaborate to solve big problems. 

Far from the bright lights of the Pavilion, Brighton’s Mouslecoombe and Bevendean estates had become synonymous with anti-social behaviour and crime for many in the area. The Bevy has shown how residents can take back control of their own amenities, turning a pub into a valued local asset at a time where public sector resources are scarce. 70 different groups used the Bevy over the last year, including tenants’ associations, health checks, Friday meals for seniors and community choirs. 

In Stoke-on-Trent, an underused shopping centre has become a centre for social change with Cultural Squatters creating a social enterprise café, volunteer hub and events venue. Building on the area’s long history of creativity and craftsmanship, local people have even launched their own currency, the ceramic Counter Coin, to encourage volunteering and local participation in community activities.

Crumlin, close to the South Wales Valleys, is home to the Crumlin Viaduct Works ironworks and the iconic 20-acre site of the former Navigation Colliery. Today Crumlin faces an uncertain future. Top-down regeneration projects have largely failed. Local people in Crumlin have big plans for the site to act as a catalyst for local jobs, environmental impact and social change. Many other communities in the Valleys today show resilience and have similar aspirations to drive prosperity.

The evidence of change we’ve seen from these projects show how our support could have a deep and lasting social impact for local people.

Recent research from peak B, a campaigning organisation for small business, shows how local businesses can be agents of change in communities, and that one or two local ‘sparks’ often create significant social value. 

We have previously worked in over 130 areas, supporting over 1,000 ‘place-based’ social entrepreneurs who in turn created 3,500 employment and volunteering opportunities. Their work benefited more than 27,000 people, over half from the most disadvantaged areas of the UK.

UnLtd and People’s Postcode Lottery will be investing £285,000 in total. The funding will go towards awards of funding and support for local people, learning journeys to connect them to social entrepreneurs in other places and work with partners, local institutions and residents to create stronger and more resilient communities.

Joseph Ray, Social Investment & Innovation Advisor from Postcode Innovation Trust, said: “Supporting social enterprises that want to become more innovative and impactful across 

The support will enable enterprising people to start and grow ideas for lasting change, as part of UnLtd’s work to build stronger and more resilient communities across the UK. 

Great Britain is what we’re really focused on and we’re pleased that UnLtd will be helping with this mission. Working across different locations across the country and investing in projects that’ll tackle a variety of social issues will make a real difference to communities.”

About Postcode Innovation Trust

Postcode Innovation Trust is a grant giving body that supports social enterprises to increase their impact and improve the lives of their beneficiaries through trading. 

The Trust supports social enterprises through each stage of the innovation lifecycle from early stage to maturity through a variety of funding methods. The Trust supports social enterprises working in the following areas: 

  • Social inclusion
  • Community
  • Environmental improvement

Further information is available at the Trust’s website: http://www.postcodeinnovationtrust.org.uk

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Author Info


Ruth Coustick-DealCommunications Officer

UnLtd award winners all have fascinating stories about their ventures and why they do what they do. My role is to ensure these stories are told and seen by the world. I want to make sure all the teams at UnLtd communicate their work effectively, and that they have the best tools to do so. I have a background in political campaigning, spending the last seven years trying to improve human rights in the UK. In my spare time I co-host and produce a podcast about technology and its impact on society, and enjoy drawing and making art

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