Spacemakers Project, Hartcliffe, Bristol, BS13

The project



Spacemakers is a small section of Wilmott Park, in the Hartcliffe area of Bristol. Known as one of the most deprived areas within Bristol, with social issues locally, Mark Rooney headed a project which helped to bring together the community by featuring young people prominently in all elements including the design of the public space, the recruitment of a landscape architect and even publicising the ongoing development to the local community via local radio and television appearances.

This space, and the project overall, has had a lasting effect on the community, transforming an unused and practically avoided space into a futuristic space for literally everyone. It consists of a slide and shelter for young people, a tranquil stream with modern benches for people looking to relax, and some amazing oak trees over an amazing bound gravel and white concrete middle section to complete the look.

What were the objectives of the Spacemakers Project?

Initially set up through a combination of The Architecture Centre, Bristol & The Glasshouse, London, Spacemakers project was set up in July 2002 where project manager Mark Rooney - who was an architect with experience in marketing and as a football coach - was tasked with delivering projects and goals associated with it.

These goals (or objectives if you like) were to emphasis involve youth in the project - and by doing so develop a feeling of community, create a level of ownership within their local community, improve the self worth of the young people and to improve career prospects of the youth people.

I will be tackling each of these points throughout this, and almost 18 years on (August 2022) I will be including how the young people feel these have been achieved.