How can a building make you smile?Reimagining and redeveloping The Courts Imagine a place where a young person’s background, race, beliefs, gender, physical ability and economic status had nothing to do with how good they could be, what they could achieve. A space where they could fully explore their creative potential, receive support and mentoring, and find meaningful work. That place is the Old Bristol Magistrates Courts (The Courts). An enterprise centre to help young people set up their own creative businesses and develop their opportunities. A place where there are no barriers to their future, where the only things that count are their abilities and talents. Thanks to the The National Lottery Heritage Fund and Bristol City Council we are developing detailed business and architectural plans to reimagine and redevelop this historic city landmark as a place that will complement Bristol’s renowned and growing creative industries sector. To get involved and keep up to date with our progress, sign up to our newsletter. The Problem with Creativity The Creative Surplus UK creative industries are a true success story. They are growing at twice the rate of the UK economy, while employment in the sector grows at four times the rate of the national workforce. Creative industries form a key sector of UK industry, generating around £92 billion per annum and contributing more than 5% of the UK economy (DCMS, 2017). Taken as a whole, the creative industries employ about 15,900 people in the Bristol and Bath area. The region’s creatives are estimated to be 50% more productive than the UK average and productivity in creative businesses across Bristol and Bath has increased by 106% since 1999. The Creative Deficit All those positive statistics mask stark reminders about how inequality and other disadvantages are stopping many very able young people from entering the creative industries. White people hold 88% of the jobs and only 11% are occupied by BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) people. Men dominate the sector holding 63% of the jobs. In the gaming industry, a creative field in which the UK excels, 86% of jobs are held by men, 96% by white people. It is also significantly difficult if a young person comes from state education. Since 2010, there has been a 28% drop in the number of students taking creative GCSEs, with a corresponding drop in the number of specialist arts teachers. Our Solution The Courts will throw open the doors to creativity through an open, enabling and supportive environment for those talented but disadvantaged or marginalised young people seeking to enter the creative industries. Floor by floor plan Basement It is envisaged the basement level (the old cell block) will contain incubator space and enterprise workshops for young people. Our plan is to let this space on a short-term and quick-release basis for people looking to develop a business, or starting out as a young professional. Ground floor The ground floor currently has four courtrooms, one of which will be restored to its original condition and offered as a film, television and performance location. The remaining rooms will be developed into lettable spaces for multipurpose use. These will include space for Creative Youth Network services, for creative industries, youth participation work, performance, gallery exhibition and a bar/café.A public entry will ensure everyone, regardless of their physical ability, can use the same entrance. First, second & third floors The first, second and third floors will provide 1,115m² of high-quality office space let commercially and accommodating around 110 workers. These tenant organisations will share our organisational values and ethos for the building.A new lift will connect all four floors, again ensuring full access, while the old staircase will be retained as a heritage feature. We are also considering a green-roof across some of the open spaces covering the rooftop to complement the high-spec insulation, heating and cooling, and energy conservation measures planned to ensure The Courts has the lowest possible environmental impact. About us Blog Spotlight Partner: Full Circle Full Circle We're delighted to announce our new partnership with our latest sub-contractor Full Circle, which will help us deliver youth work in St Pauls, as part of the Youth Investment Fund programme. Full Circle @ Docklands is a grass roots organisation which strives to promote inclusion and provide essential support to the St Pauls community. Full Circle is at the heart of St Pauls community, having spent over 30 years building strong relationships with young people and their families in the St Paul's area. They engage hundreds of young people each year and help them develop their skills and build their confidence. We support Full Circle's ethos of celebrating the diversity of St Paul's and working towards the inclusion of all groups and cultures within the local community. Full Circle @ Docklands is pivotal in the St Pauls community, we are delighted to be able to partner with them. Young people are at the heart of the partnership, the shared experience of both organisations will be pivotal in building long lasting relationships with young people based on trust. It is these relationships that are the key to helping young people, define their goals and reach their own potential in the long term. - Sandy Hore-Ruthven, Creative Youth Network CEO Both organisations are very excited with the opportunity to learn from each other's practices, with the aim to improving inclusion across all our work in the city and providing young people with the very best youth service possible. By sharing resources we will be able to reach more young people and have more impact. The funding provided by the Youth Investment Fund allows us to offer our young people new experiences, opportunities and activities so that they can grow, learn and fulfil their full potential. By working in partnership with Creative Youth Network, we are able to invest in our youth service which will not only benefit our young people, but will benefit the wider community by allowing our young people to aspire to a higher standard of living, contributing to the economic and social vibrancy of the city. - Danielle Ferguson, Trustee of Full Circle Find out more about Full Circle.