It’s been ages since we last blogged, but we’re back and will try to be a bit more present.
In a counter intuitive move at the start of a new school year, I thought I’d talk a bit about our social enterprise arm: the Electric Barge - have a look at www.theelectricbarge.co.uk. We’ve put a lot of effort into building this side of our activities over the last couple of years - when grant funding is so tight it makes a lot of sense to try and generate more of your own income.
We have new branding, a new website, a better online listings presence and have had a really good summer off the back of this. As a result we have won business from Marks & Spencer, Deloittes, London Business School and we’ll be hosting an event for Tom Dixon as part of London Design Festival later this month.
The truly great thing about this is that all the money we earn from commercial hire is ploughed straight back into our education work. If you click the following link you’ll see how much this can resonate with potential corporate hirers: http://blur-marketing.com/blog/a-party-reminds-clients-why-you-float-their-boat/
So hiring the Electric Barge for a party or a meeting can have a positive impact on a child’s life by giving them exciting opportunities to learn. That’s got to be worth doing, hasn’t it?
Last week was first week back after Easter for schools so relatively quiet on the boat, but very busy for us in the office. Loads of enquiries about booking from teachers who have obviously been doing their planning over the holiday and glad to say that we are pretty much full up now for the rest of this term.
We did start back on Tales from the Towpath last week. Pupils at Edward Wilson Primary explored the crypt at St Mary Magdalene Church with us and we’ll be using that as the inspiration for some spooky stories with them this week. We also met the pupils at Paddington Green Primary who will be taking part for the first time. They’re a lively bunch and we’re really looking forward to exploring Little Venice and Paddington Basin with them on Tuesday.
Also this week, we’re trying out something new. Year 2 pupils from Edward Wilson are coming on board for 2 sessions on nocturnal animals with our Natural History man, Tim Maynard. Interested to see how this works during the daytime and what surprises Tim magics up from his menagerie of animals!
One last thing: still buzzing from our shortlisting for the Charity Awards 2012, we may also hear this week how we have fared in the Waterways Renaissance Awards. Fingers crossed and as soon as we know, we’ll post it up here.
Have a great week.