United Kingdom (London)
Goldfinger Factory is a social enterprise in London's joint most deprived ward. Located in the underbelly of the iconic Trellick Tower, it strives to inspire the community through the fabrication of bespoke furniture and interiors. Local expert artisans struggling to find work are given a free studio space, access to workshop facilities and retail space. In return, they pass on their treasured knowledge to young residents. Britain has more teenagers leaving school than ever before with figures showing more 15 to 19-year-olds in the UK are not in employment, education or training than in any other developed country. It’s not just the younger students being let down by the education system; hundreds of thousands of graduates are unable to find jobs at the end of their studies. In this volatile climate, Goldfinger Factory is offering a craft-based solution. Their artisans-in-residence provide these 16-25 year olds who have fallen through the cracks of mainstream education in traditional skills such as carpentry, metalworking, cabinet-making and decorating to make of them future-proof craftspeople. They also provide building services to the community free of charge including an urban beach, festival stages and myriad craft classes. What's more, all of their furniture is crafted from reclaimed wood (known as upcycling) making it an eco-friendly alternative to commercial design & build companies. The problem of waste is a global one and all too often businesses are too comfortable with a ‘use once throw away’ outlook. In 2016, reports found that the capital produces around 22m tonnes of waste every year. This idea of ‘waste’ is a human concept as there is no such thing in nature. Goldfinger Factory believes that rather than being a problem, waste is actually just a resource in the wrong hands. This is a model that can help, not just a few hundred people in one community, but thousands across the globe
Tess Lowery is an investigative journalist. Born in Brixton and raised in rural Southern France, she then went on to live and freelance in Paris, Africa, Afghanistan and Australia.
Oliver Waddington-Ball, CEO, Marie Cudennec, COO,.