The Ore Valley DIY Regen project is an ambitious plan for the derelict former Power Station site in the Ore Valley.
We believe this land should be owned by the people of Ore Valley, and that it should be dedicated to affordable housing, workspace, community facilities and woodland, built by and for people from the local area.
Supported by Hastings Borough Council, we've been granted an 18 month licence to operate on the site until February 2018. So far we're doing our best to open the site to as many local people as possible. We want people to come and enjoy the land, and to imagine new uses for it, be they temporary or more long term.
So far our team have been involved in different activities onsite. Jonny, our first site steward, together with Dan, our lead volunteer and now lead site steward, built these amazing seating pods. Maybe the building of these could become an ongoing concern and eventually generate income for the site and the projects which take place on it.
Another project taking place onsite is the Greenway. Hastings Greenway Group have been campaigning for years for better walking and cycling routes around town. In the Ore Valley they've got plans to create a route which will take you straight from Ore Station, right on up through the valley. We've been supporting this project and have already made preparations for the route to come through our site, opening up access from Ore Station and Ore Valley Road, linking up with Fellows Road and Upper Broomgrove.
We've also been using the site to host events and have so far held two large events, attracting over 650 people to the site. 'Warm Up Ore Valley' took place in November 2016 and included a DJ, mini-bonfires and free BBQ for anyone who attended.
More recently we held a mini-festival onsite in April 2017, with a grand presentation of a major international artwork, live music form local bands The Wobblies, Fabulous Red Diesel, Notes from Underground, Doctor Savage and The Vile Electrodes. Nearly 500 people signed in and we secured pledges from the local Labour, Conservative, Lib Dem and Green Parties to support our efforts to bring this land into community ownership. We started a petition for local people to support us, which is continued online here.
Now that the madness of our April event has passed we're hoping to concentrate on our next major projects:
- The delivery and installation of a 15ft summer house which has been kindly donated by a local resident. Once installed this will act as a site office of sorts, as well as an all weather meeting space.
- The development of our 40ft shipping container into a homestead/outdoor kitchen/cafe
- Cleaning up a set of fences which were kindly donated to us by Hastings Borough Council - they're originally from the pier and have been in storage since the fire in 2010. We hope to use them to make our pond areas safer for youngsters
- Developing our waterways and increasing bio-diversity onsite - we've taken advice from Pete the Pond and have great plans for encouraging more bees, insects and wildlife to our greenspaces and waterways
Our emphasis for this project is on Bottom Up Development (BUD) which means that we only do what we agree on as a team, and we welcome anyone from the local area to join our team. We hold regular meetings every Wednesday at 12 @ the Bridge community centre, and we're onsite regularly every week:
Mon - 12:00 - 17:00
Wed - 14:00 - 16:00
Fri - 12:00 - 16:00
Sat - 10:00 - 14:00
We really do need as many people involved with us as is possible to make this a real BUD community development so please join us, as we fight for a new future for land in the Ore Valley.