We did it! The community share offer to transform the Warehouse has closed and we have successfully met our target of £240,000. I still can’t believe it! When we were discussing it in February I had no idea whether we would be able to raise what we needed. It was such a leap into the unknown, filled with hard work and risk, that it just didn’t seem possible. The fact that we have now achieved our goal is proof that if we are bold enough to demand the impossible, the laws of possibility change.
We couldn’t have done it without a great number of people. It was a herculean effort and a few individual volunteers in particular moved mountains and sweated blood to get us there. We are extremely grateful that Friends of the Earth England Wales and Northern Ireland are investing £40,000 into the scheme. We received £100,000 of match investment from Co-ops UK without which the business case would simply not have been feasible.
The biggest thanks, though, have to go to the 87 individual investors who believed in us enough to be part of our future. We are delighted to welcome so many members into the organisation, old friends and new, the many that gave what they could. The story of the Warehouse has always been more about people than it has bricks and windows. The visionary few that moved in 40 years ago, the many that have steered it through stormy weather, this is a building where people meet, make friends, fall in love and, in our small way, change the world.
As we enter the next chapter we look forward to realising the dreams we have held for a long time: disabled access to the first floor, exemplary energy efficiency, more space for our tenants to grow and more income to support our campaigning. We stand on the shoulders of 40 years of environmental activism in Birmingham and we now know that we can continue this legacy and do it proud. We are going to have a bigger, bolder future and I can’t wait to see what it’s going to bring. Let’s get to work!