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Second public workshop for Crowdfund Rochester

Posted on 18 September 2018

Crowdfund Rochester, the new initiative by Countryside and Hyde in partnership with Spacehive, is holding its second public workshop on 25 September.

Following the success of the first public workshop in July and the launch of Crowdfund Rochester’s first project, the second interactive workshop will give more people in the local area the opportunity to create and fund projects which will make Rochester an even better place to live, work, study and visit.

The first project supported by Crowdfund Rochester has already launched; a sensory garden on Rochester Esplanade in tribute to local suffragist Vera Conway Gordon, whose family home is directly opposite the Esplanade. Located just a stone’s throw from Rochester Castle, the sensory garden will enrich an existing space to create a garden where visitors can enjoy a range of educational and recreational sensory experiences. Those interested can find out how to support the project by visiting Crowdfund Rochester.

Following the July workshop, where eight projects began their crowdfunding journey, the September public workshop is taking place on the 25 September at 5.30pm at the Rochester Corn Exchange. Rochester residents are invited to attend the launch, where they will find out more about how they can get involved in this exciting new initiative. Registration for the launch event is free and you can sign up through Crowdfund Rochester.

Those unable to attend the event are still invited to get involved by submitting their project ideas online.

With a fund of £50,000 available to support crowdfunding projects in the local area, Crowdfund Rochester will equity-match the funding for a variety of community initiatives in Rochester and across Medway for the next 10 years, with the initial aim to get five to six projects underway this year.

The initiative is being offered as part of Countryside and Hyde’s new £419m regeneration scheme, Rochester Riverside, which is currently underway.

Andy Fancy, Managing Director for North and South London at Countryside Partnerships South, said: "As the new homes at Rochester Riverside take shape, it’s extremely exciting to also see the first Crowdfund Rochester projects going live.

"There’s been such a variety of ideas; all of which are testament to the creativity of the Rochester community. With the second public workshop taking place this month, there’s still a great opportunity for local people to get involved in the programme."

David Gannicott, Group Director of Business Development at the Hyde Group, said: "We are delighted to see the first project from Crowdfund Rochester get underway - it is a fantastic idea and will be a great addition to the community. Crowdfund Rochester is a perfect opportunity for local people to get involved and work with us to bring something new to the town and I am really looking forward to hearing more about the future projects that the local residents would like to see."

Cllr Alan Jarrett, Leader of Medway Council, said: "I am pleased to see the first Crowdfund Projects taking shape. Rochester Riverside is Medway’s flagship regeneration project which will provide growth for all.

"The homes will boast fantastic views across the River Medway as well as great transport links, with London only 40 minutes away by train."

Rochester Riverside is the region’s flagship regeneration project. Delivered by Countryside and Hyde over the next 12 years, it will create a new mixed-tenure community of up to 1,400 new homes with provision for a primary school, nursery, as well as a hotel, parking, open space and landscaping.

Construction at the scheme has begun on the first three phases, comprising 489 homes and a hotel, along with 2,200 sqm of commercial floorspace and landscaping. The first wave of new homes is anticipated to complete in the first quarter of 2019.