The Railway Inn has been Winchester’s only independent music venue for close to 30 years. We’re proud that we provide a venue that commands both local and international acclaim, but we can do better.
Over the course of the last year we have begun to focus far more on the creative community in Winchester, catering to broader art forms, lectures and shows. Over the next 12 months we want to expand on this, through renovation and general improvements, to continue to give Winchester the community venue it sorely needs.
We play an essential role in the community by providing:
- A safe social space for the local area - Including supporting Safe Gigs for Women, Best Bar None and Music Venue Trust guidelines.
- Live Music - Two stages to host local, national and international artists and performers.
- Internships - Unfettered access to the inner workings of the creative industry, providing on-the-ground experience to college and university students.
- Poetry Nights - A platform for first-time and established writers to share and perform works.
- Song Academy - Providing a professional space for 9-16 year olds to rehearse, develop, and perform their own music to a live audience.
- Open Mic Night - With a twist! Artists perform using a full PA system with qualified sound engineer.
- CSR and Sustainability - Educational speakers and networking events championing social responsibility and environmental issues.
- And much, much more...
By providing a place for people to pursue their hobbies, interests and passions (or simply enjoy a drink) we continue to support new talent in Winchester and surrounding areas. Provision of the above activities is heavily subsidised; we strongly believe that, without a dedicated grassroots venue, the creative community will have limited chance to flourish.
In order to sustain and improve the Railway Inn we need to urgently implement a number of new initiatives, and hope to do so through fundraising.
The immediate future of The Railway is at risk. Followers of charities such as The Music Venues Trust will know that grassroots venues across the country are threatened by a myriad of problems. Since January 2018 alone, at least five established and well-loved venues have closed due to financial difficulty, planning threats and a lack of national funding.
The Railway Inn is at a very real risk of being forced to close. We urgently need support from the community to not only grow, but to survive.
Immediate target : £10,000
Objective One - Modernise Facilities
We are in desperate need of a range of improvements to increase venue accessibility. These include providing inclusive and disabled access to toilet and gig facilities in line with “Attitude Is Everything” ratings.
Associated costs: £10,250
Inclusive access (estimate provided by Attitude is Everything) - £8,500
DMX lighting systems for accessibility / flexibility - £1,750
Objective Two - Renovate Performance Areas
The Attic venue, host to Poetry Platform, Song Academy and CSR events, requires suitable air conditioning to make it a year-round space.
Associated costs: £3,000
Air Conditioning Unit - £2,200
Air Conditioning approved installation - £800
Objective Three - Expand Career Launchpad projects
Additional funds are required for us to sustain and improve our internship schemes (working for free is bad). This includes upgrading sound equipment.
Associated costs: £8,000
Intern expenses / nominal salary offering (to cover 2 x Interns per annum) £7,400
Sound equipment upgrade (sound desk in The Attic) £600
Objective Four - Community MakerSpace and Workshop
Funds are required to create a bespoke multi-generational space, supporting educational and entrepreneurial initiatives for all members of the community.
Associated costs: £650
Most work has already been completed by volunteers and friends of The Railway Inn; finishing touches, soft furnishings, seating, decor etc. still required.
THANK YOU for taking the time to read this, and to those that choose to support us; you have our undying gratitude for making the decision to help support your local music and arts community.
Love & Hugs,
Your Railway Family x