Glastonbury

The Glastonbury Town Deal has secured £23.6 million investment for the town, representing a once-in-a-generation opportunity to deliver the objectives outlined in the Town Investment Plan

The Life Factory – Building C Regeneration

Lead Organisation: The Red Brick Building Centre Ltd, working with Strode College

This project builds on the accelerator project in developing an iconic building for businesses, learning, young people and community uses.

Funding

  • Towns Fund:  £2.89m
  • Co-Funding:  £2.89m

Outcomes

  • Provision of space for artisan businesses, youth, music and broadcasting
  • Deliver a vibrant creative impact

Key Project Themes

  • Grow the Economy
  • Reduce Deprivation
  • Address COVID-19 Recovery

Rationale

  • Addresses need to regenerate an iconic building and a long-neglected part of the town.
  • Will provide a focus for the many creative and design industries in the town, enabling training to be carried out, businesses established, and jobs delivered.
  • Addresses youth issues experienced by the town including improving educational and skills attainment to reduce youth unemployment.
  • Meets the need for gathering space for people of all ages.

Project Summary

The Life Factory at Red Brick Building C will become the new creative heart of Glastonbury. Set to be transformed in a similar manner to Red Brick Buildings A and B, The Life Factory will provide a vibrant community space where artists, musicians, actors, makers and other local people can meet, eat, learn, collaborate, inspire and thrive.

The regeneration of this iconic building will deliver a multi-purpose space where people can share and develop their skills. The Life Factory will provide local people with access to equipment and skills training, supporting the transition to further education and the workplace, as well as improving health and wellbeing.

It will become a home for new and established artisan businesses, as well as a safe, fun space where teenagers can hang out. People of all ages will be given the chance to learn and practise creative skills, which some may then use to kickstart a new career.

State-of-the-art broadcast facilities will be used for both training and creation, as will a dedicated music and performance arts zone. In addition, local community radio station Glastonbury FM will relocate into the new state-of-the-art Community Media Centre.

As well as having a focus on making, restoring and repairing, The Life Factory will be powered by locally produced green energy, supporting the town’s journey to net zero.

 

Project FAQs

What is going to happen in the building?
The expansion of the Red Brick Building site will allow us to further deliver on Community, Arts, Education and Enterprise. We have lots of exciting plans afoot. These include:
•  The Life Factory Open Workshop which is a makerspace, connecting local people with equipment so we can all get making and repairing!
•  A community canteen with low-cost meals and an opportunity for people to get involved in the preparation of the meals, using vegetables grown on our sister project, the Glastonbury Food and Regenerative Farming Centre.
•  A recording studio and multi-media training suite for GFM.
•  A dedicated space for young people to hang out and access youth provision.

Who will this project be for?
Everyone! The Town Deal funding was awarded to Glastonbury as it is an area of deprivation, so we want to ensure that those struggling financially can also use the building and have exciting things to do.

How long will it be before we can use the building?
We are in the planning stages of the build and expect to open in late 2025!

Are you recruiting local people for the build?
Yes! We have set up the Beckery Construction Company and hope to recruit as many local people as possible. We are also offering apprenticeships and recently held a recruitment day at the Red Brick Building.

How will the building help Glastonbury become carbon neutral by 2030?
The Life Factory project has been awarded additional funding through the Robert Richards Initiative – another of the Glastonbury Town Deal projects – to increase the building’s capacity to conserve energy. We are looking into different options of renewable energy sources – particularly solar, hydro and wind.