Three crowdfunded Crawley projects are now open

Children from The Mill Primary Academy in their indoor art garden.
Children from The Mill Primary Academy in their indoor art garden.

Three crowdfunded projects have been completed and are ready for the community to enjoy.

The first project to be delivered was Broadfield Community Centre’s Outdoor Gym, which received £4,873 from 22 backers including £1,729 from Crawley Borough Council.

The community centre hopes the outdoor facility will encourage people to increase their physical activity and improve wellbeing. The gym includes a spinning bicycle, pendulum and elliptical machine.

Broadfield Community Centre manager, Tracy Frake, said: “Our outdoor gym project was suggested to us by the community so it’s fitting it was funded by the community too.

“Since being installed, the gym has received positive feedback from its users – it’s great to see the community making use of the free equipment. Big thank you to everyone who made this project possible.”

The Wheelchair Swing Project, one of the first projects to be crowdfunded, has been delivered by Autism Support Crawley with the help of 41 backers, including a £5,000 contribution from the council’s Neighbourhood Improvement Fund (NIF).

A total of £12,926 was raised to install a wheelchair swing in Maidenbower Park, making the play area more accessible to people in the community.

Autism Support Crawley chairman, Maria Cook, said: “To see our wheelchair swing in Maidenbower Park makes us extremely proud. We are so grateful for the support and donations received from local councils, businesses and the public.

“Since installing the swing, the response from the community has been overwhelming. We will continue to fundraise for the hoist assisted toilet, which will make the park fully accessible and inclusive.”

The latest completed project, The Mill Indoor Art Garden, was coordinated and delivered by The Craftimation Factory and funded by 18 backers.

The crowdfunded £2,146 went towards a cushioned seating area for reflection and relaxation, a large willow sculpture and wall-based mural, alongside various pieces of art created by the children of The Mill Primary Academy.

Janey Moffatt, crafter-in-chief at The Craftimation Factory, said: “We’re hugely grateful to Crawley Borough Council for its kind donation and support, without this the project wouldn’t have happened.

“Being crowdfunded made such a difference to the children; it’s helped them to realise that anything is possible. This gives them a really proactive and positive attitude as they are growing up, which is invaluable.”

Councillor Peter Smith, Cabinet member for planning and economic development, said: “It’s always exciting to see crowdfunding projects come to fruition.

Cllr Peter Smith on the outdoor gym equipment with Tracy, Viv and Simon from Broadfield Community Centre.

Cllr Peter Smith on the outdoor gym equipment with Tracy, Viv and Simon from Broadfield Community Centre.

"Congratulations to all three of these projects, a lot of work goes into reaching this point.

“It's tremendous that many of Crawley’s community groups have stepped up and helped to make our Crowdfund Crawley project successful. The council’s NIF still has more financial support to give so if you have a project idea that could benefit the community, I urge you to start crowdfunding.”

If you want to know how to get involved in crowdfunding, Crowdfund Crawley is hosting an information event at Crawley Library on Wednesday, September 4 from 2pm to 4pm.

If you have an idea for a project that will benefit your community, then create a crowdfunding project page here.

Cllr Peter Smith with Maria Cook from Autism Support Crawley.

Cllr Peter Smith with Maria Cook from Autism Support Crawley.