Low Budget but Big Community Impact

31 January 2020

For the last decade the church congregation has been faithfully praying about how they could use their building to serve their community.

In 2012 Allenton was given ‘Big Local’ Funding and a community organisation ‘Allenton Big Local’ (ABL) was set up. One of the founding members of the ABL Partnership was also a member at St Martin’s and it soon became evident that there were several groups in Allenton who shared the same social objectives and vision.

Working together with the community groups and with a grant of £70,000 from ABL, ambitious plans were drawn up to extend and refurbish the existing church buildings and develop a community hub. However it soon became obvious that this funding would not be enough to fulfil the dream.

Thinking ‘out of the box’ the partnership viewed the challenge as one not simply about monetary funding. Guided by the church vision and shared group aspiration, the team has built on local network and agency contacts which has resulted in the wider Derby community coming on-board in support. The result is a DIY SOS style project, with much of the work being provided free of charge or at cost by local tradesmen.

What it will deliver

St Martin’s working with and alongside other community groups will provide:

    • An affordable community café providing a meeting place for the deprived in the area.
    • Toddler groups (much needed in this poor area)
    • A community garden set within this busy urban area, boasting ‘plot to plate’ initiatives, sensory garden and outdoor play
    • A community project (involving the café) supporting adults with learning difficulties
    • Strengthening existing links with ‘Enthusiasm’ providing a place for youth clubs and dance groups
    • New community rooms for local groups to meet and hold events
    • New toilets and disabled facilities that local shoppers can use
    • Provide a refurbished Church building fit for 21st Century Worship


Click here to watch a video about the project.
Click here for the St Martin's website.