Our vision, mission and strategic objectives to save and build an extraordinary Community Centre

After taking all the necessary, short term actions to get the Mechanics Institute up and running, the Board met on Sunday the 5th November 2017 and spent a whole day working out WHY the Mechanics Institute community centre exists; its purpose, if you will. It’s important to have a vision to help us and everyone in Eccleshill drive towards something compelling.

Our vision is:
An Eccleshill where people are happy, as part of a true community. A tidy, clean, safe and friendly place to live where everyone plays their part (however small), in contributing to this being a long-lived reality. An Eccleshill, where there is inter-generational and inter-cultural respect.

Our Mission (the ECA Board and Mechanics Institute):
To provide a ‘fit for purpose community hub’ that helps to improve Eccleshill and the lives of its community; somewhere that’s accessible to local people and businesses for services and space that helps to knit our community together.

Our strategic objectives for achieving this mission:
In order to develop a fully utilised and sustainable Mechanics Institute Community Centre (Eccleshill Mechanics Institute) whereby maximum impact on our VISION AND MISSION is achieved, we agreed the following themed objectives:

  1. To refurbish the Mechanics Institute over a phased period – starting with basic redecoration to encourage more use of the asset and thereby drive footfall from the community.
    • In the short term we have carried out redecoration of the café area, room 8, the main hall as well as some limited external redecoration, secured lottery funding for the toilets to be renovated, redesigned the access for room 8 and re-drawn storage areas to be fit for purpose. We have also refurbished the cottage which is now let, to bring in much needed funds for the main building. The Main Hall, upstairs, has been tidied and redecorated and is a great space for Parties and larger Group Events. We have recently combined the old ‘Computer Room’ and the staff office into a superb conference room, with modern facilities for the perfect Business or Community Group Meeting.
    • Longer term, we will increase provision for disabled access and refurbish and decorate all rooms so that this is a destination for parties, events, meetings and much, much more.
  2. To drive an increase in funding, through new and existing services growth, and from direct fund-raising (encouraging donations from individuals and businesses)
    • We have a fantastic café and a monthly Bistro night whcih has proved to be a huge succes.
    • Some people are donating monthly via our JustGiving and direct debit schemes
    • We aim to increase funding by increasing room hire, improving and expanding services offered and through donations.

  3. To establish an effective ‘bank’ of volunteers – so that costs of operation are minimised (whilst not compromising customer service and community provision)
    • We have some wonderful volunteers who give their time to help run the café or do some decorating or whatever we need – we are very grateful. And it’s incredibly rewarding to know so many want to give something back to their community.
  4. To communicate to Eccleshill’s community about the Vision and Mission, in order to motivate and actively engage the community
    • This website aims to communicate up to date information to all in and around Eccleshill

      Our Facebook page has been a great way of reaching those of you who are on Facebook.
    • Our quarterly newsletter reaches out to 5000in Eccleshill

  5. To professionalise the smooth operation of the Mechanics’ Institute
    • Lots has been done in to meet statutory requirements
    • A full review of the operating procedures has been carried out and users of the building will be safe in the knowledge that we are looking out for their welfare as well as their comfort

  6. To effectively and continuously market and promote the Mechanics Institute’s services and provisions
    • Facebook has been incredibly popular for cost-effectively reaching people
    • We have revitalised the public notices outside the Mechanics
    • We have purchased a TV screen for those entering the building to see what’s on and happening.
    • We plan to market the building and its rooms and services to the community and to local businesses and organisations too

  7. To establish and maintain professional and effective management of the Mechanics Institute
    • We try hard as volunteers, with limited time (we all have jobs too), to make sure the service we provide results in a great experience
    • As time goes on, and when we can sustain funding reliably, we will seek to engage and pay contractors and staff to help run the centre. But for now, apart from having to pay for essential maintenance, bills and refurbishment, we are keen to run on ‘volunteer- power’ as much as possible. This way, we know we will have a community centre that will continue to be just that for many years to come!
  8. To grow community networks and link up with businesses in the area, thereby supporting our local economy
    • We plan to run Business Networking events, in the near future. This is to help local businesses network even more effectively and to help them grow their businesses… you never know

Always lots happening and things changing which can now been seen visibly when visiting the Mechanics’.