Bootstrap Charity

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Providing affordable workspace, enterprise support and training

Organisation type

Workspace and training

Grant amount


Award date

June 2015

Long-running community business Bootstrap Charity was set-up in a three-storey former Edwardian Print House and Colourworks to alleviate poverty and increase education and enterprise within the local community. Today, Bootstrap aims to transform the cultural and creative life of its corner of Hackney by providing business and start-up support, and access to networks for small to medium sized enterprises, which have great potential for economic and social impacts. Since receiving the Power to Change grant, Bootstrap has started works to transform a neglected car park into a hub for new businesses called the Bootyard. A fashion designer, a foraging business, a micro-brewery and an architect have all taken up residence in the new affordable workspace.

The grant was also used to carry out a feasibility study for a new building called the Bunker House, a new build 6 storey development with two floors for anchor tenants, two for managed workspace and two for community projects and youth services. This has led to Bootstrap Charity partnering with Hackney Cooperative Developments CIC to create Dalston Works. And in January 2016, this leveraged £1,644,388 from the London Regeneration Fund, which was match funded with £1,681,241 from the London Borough of Hackney to develop Bunker House.

The Power to Change grant also enabled Bootstrap to join forces with their neighbours and approach the local council to give advice about how land development will affect local businesses.

Without the Power to Change grant, we wouldn’t have been able to become involved in so many different projects so fast, and become more influential in our neighbourhood.

Sara Turnbull – CEO Bootstrap Charity

Key objectives & Outcomes

Grant impact

Funding was used to create workspace for 10 new tenants in a former car park. It is also financing a feasibility study exploring the viability of a new community development and helping Bootstrap explore its roles in the regeneration of Dalston

Locally rooted

Founded in 1978 as a training and enterprise organisation providing affordable workspace to local people, Bootstrap has gone on to support and nurture charities, social enterprises, and small creative businesses based in and serving the community

Improved social inclusion

Bootstrap encourages social inclusion in a number of ways. Sliding scale rents attract a diverse range of businesses. Regular cultural events draw in the local community and young people are engaged through work experience and a schools programme