Really Local Group shakes up the high street with Catford Mews

Cultural infrastructure developers Really Local Group is set to launch first of its kind venue, Catford Mews in late summer 2019. The forward-thinking venue is a 23,000 sq ft community hub that will provide a three-screen cinema, food market, café, bar, live entertainment venue, and eventually co-working areas and exhibition spaces.

Catford Mews has been created by Really Local Group, who create and restore cultural infrastructure by ‘putting the heart back into the high street’, which act as a catalyst for the wider regeneration of the local area. The company’s mission is to provide inclusive and affordable venues for communities, which will be uniquely designed to reflect their locality, and will act as a community ‘hub’ for the area.

The space will be a destination in its own right, welcoming all ages and local groups, and activated throughout the day. The multi-screen cinema will be the first in Lewisham in almost 20 years and the programming will be in partnership with the Independent Cinema Office (ICO), with extensive consultation with the local community to select specific films. The cinema aims to be affordable and inclusive, with average ticket prices being between £5 and £8. The venue will offer 220 seats across 3 screens which will be fully accessible, with wheelchair access and hard-of-hearing screenings.

Music will also form a key aspect of Catford Mews. A stage with live performance equipment will be on offer, encouraging local artists, groups and even schools to become part of the diverse Catford Mews programme.

The food market will include a variety of stalls from local traders, selling the likes of jerk chicken, pizza and vegan doughnuts. The venue will also include a full-service bar, serving local produce including its very own Catford Mews beer from local Brockley Brewery.

Local entrepreneurs such as the food traders will also have the opportunity to seek support from Community Interest Company (C.I.C.) Really Local Fund, which aims to empower local communities by investing profit back into local entrepreneurs. In addition to funding, Really Local Fund also supports local communities by providing modern space and facilities for community and non-profit arts group, as well as subsidising training for young people.

Founder Memberships for Catford Mews will be available for locals to buy from Kickstarter. Several membership options will be available, including student, 60+, family, standard and unlimited membership, which will be available from £20. Benefits of founder membership include free cinema tickets, private screenings, area hires and exclusive discounts across the venue.

Preston Benson, Founder and visionary behind Really Local Group, commented: “Really Local Group is all about prioritising true localism, delivering first-class and much needed cultural infrastructure with genuine consultation with the people of the local area. It is my aim to make Catford Mews the envy of South London, a destination for the people of Catford and the surrounding area, which will spearhead a revival of the Catford Centre. I am incredibly excited to open this new community space and look forward to sharing details on our next projects in the coming months”