Meet the Family
We first viewed the building we are now in with a view to taking a flat within it; the moment we saw it we knew we would have to have the whole lot! The building is massive; three floors with a huge basement and has been at various times, a Boots chemist a pub and furniture shop, It appears a genteel but rather shabby old lady. The only thing left was to decide what we were going to do with it.
Sarah my wife is a journalist and community radio broadcaster, she has also run a pub and restaurant. I am a furniture designer/maker have worked in film set design and the music industry, I have also run award winning social enterprises and have achieved a great deal of success in the field of getting disadvantaged groups into employment. We are both highly skilled at taking risk, and getting big things done for no money. Chucking all that into the pot with our shared love of Folkestone; we came up with FAMILY. FAMILY is not just about business, it’s about getting people together to talk, share and hopefully bring about some form of social change.
Where we are now
With the small amount of cash we had (and haven't!) we have built a theatrical space that includes a 40 seater floating table, a hanging greenhouse and an extravagant amount of wonderful old junk; we guarantee WOW factor! The place has been built almost entirely out of re-used and up-cycled materials, most of which came from within the building itself. On just our trial openings we can guarantee the place will be rammed from day one with people that don’t just want to kick back and have a laugh, but with people who place social justice and equality high on their list of personal priorities.
The engine for this change will be based around a business that is a bar, a deli, a cafe, a performance space, a showcase for art and furniture design and a community kitchen. The business will provide the base for lots of community initiatives and we are establishing our own CIO. We are developing strong connections with organisations throughout the local third sector to develop and refine our work, and target the groups that would most benefit the facilities and services we will offer.
We have done our homework and have hopefully identified what Folkestone needs as opposed to what it is given.
We have a commitment to employing people from the widest range of disadvantage, we will sell only the highest quality goods (local produce or “fair trade” wherever possible) and offer exciting and thoughtful entertainment. Central to our plans is establishing a spacious industrial kitchen on our first floor, that will, along with our greenhouse provide for our deli (and beyond), as well as being a space for our community cooking workshops. The space will also host regular and exciting pop up kitchen events run by people wanting to establish their own businesses within the industry.
The Family Plan
- Community cooking programmes
- Start-up kitchen hub for new restaurateurs/chefs
- Music and food festivals (First Jazz festival already booked for Oct 2016)
- Textile workshops
- Internal floating Greenhouse
- Unique and exciting space
- General good vibes
We are justifiably proud of the huge progress we have achieved so far, but to fully open and achieve our ultimate goals, we need your help. We need to install our commercial kitchen and pay for all the relevant grown up costs, fire alarms, music licenses, outdoor seating licenses and more. By helping us, you are also helping to bring real nightlife and community to this part of Folkestone; you will also be helping the people we will support in a dynamic, enjoyable and sustainable way. Thank you!
DIG DEEP, DUDES