What is Bradford One?
Bradford One is a community interest group seeking to redevelop the much-loved Odeon building at the heart of Bradford into a live venue which both reflects and improves our city.
Our founders were formerly ‘Save The Odeon’ campaigners, and formed Bradford One as an ‘Industrial and Provident Society for the Benefit of the Community‘ (also known as an ‘IPS Bencom’). This is a legally-recognised, co-operative structure which allows the people of Bradford to join us as members, to vote for our board, and to take part in key decisions relating to our bid.
Ultimately our aim is to create an internationally-recognised, economically viable venue with an assured future. This venue would be owned by the people of Bradford and would work alongside other businesses in the city to improve our city as a whole.
We have chosen to create a bid this way because we think that working together as a city to create something perfectly suited to Bradford’s needs and ambitions will completely transform the image of our city and ensure we get exactly what we need.
This model of ownership will include an asset lock on the site so that it will remain in the ownership of the people of Bradford, and all profits generated by the project can be distributed directly back into the city.
We are all normal Bradfordians with no vested interests other than that we care about the building, and about Bradford and its future.
Why are you doing this?
The Bradford Odeon is clearly important to local people as the long running campaign to save it has demonstrated. The voice of the community has played a massive role in ensuring that the initial plans for demolition were rejected.
The Bradford One group includes campaigners who met through the fight to save the building, via online and offline activities.
Our aim is to now transform this campaign into a constructive way of securing a solution with as much input from the people of Bradford as possible.
We believe that a redeveloped Odeon that retains the essential characteristics of the building will have far reaching benefits for Bradford city centre and the wider district, drawing people back into Bradford and helping to show what Bradford and its people really have to offer. It will complement perfectly the area around Centenary Square with the Alhambra, Media Museum and City Park.
What are your plans?
To create a multi-purpose live venue which is professionally run and owned by the community, with profits reinvested directly back into the city.
It will include a modern, well-equipped auditorium for mid-scale touring live acts, and will incorporate restaurants and café-bars which will help to make Bradford One a sustainable proposition in the heart of Bradford city centre.
What can people do to get involved?
We plan to engage with the community in two ways:
- A membership offer, to gather numbers of supporters for the redevelopment, which we can show to investors.
Online membership is open now, and you can join here
- A community share issue to let the people of Bradford take ownership of the building – shares will be available at a very low cost and will give you voting rights
This will very much be a community-led process at each stage, with the ultimate aim being a renovated building everyone can enjoy.
We need the public to demonstrate their support as this will strengthen our campaign.
How will you fund this?
A mixture of sources, including:
- public funding through issuing shares to the public
- grants, gifts and donations and community funding
- investor funding and loans
Who do you plan to work with?
We want to work with all interested parties.
Our partners so far include:
- The Co-Operative Enterprise Hub
- Halliday Clark
- Bradford College
- Mark Brearly & Company
Nothing is ruled out at this stage and we are exploring all possible options as to funding, developers, tenants and use of the spaces around the main auditorium.
We want to engage the people of Bradford throughout the whole process – we are a community led group and we want to listen to and reflect the wishes of the community.
One of Bradford’s best resources is its people and we believe that giving the people a voice and a choice is the best way forward to work towards the renovation of the building and the regeneration of Bradford city centre.
What’s the next step?
Our bid and business plan have now been delivered to the Council, and we are waiting for their decision.
You can help us in the meantime by joining us as a member.