Open Letter from Community, Cultural & Business Leaders

This Letter will be published and submitted to the recipients below at the end of March 2018. 

Jo Negrini, Chief Executive Officer, London Borough of Croydon
CC: Tony Newman, Leader of Croydon Council, Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

Dear Ms Negrini,

We are writing to you to voice concerns over proposals to demolish the building at 5-9 Surrey Street, which houses Matthews Yard, a leading Independent Cultural and Community hub in the centre of Croydon and a listed Asset of Community Value. As leaders of Croydon’s business and cultural community, representing thousands of employees and residents based in and around the borough, we wanted to record our opposition to these plans which will destroy this important community asset.

As you will be aware, a sense of place and the social and cultural facilities on offer in Croydon are as important as infrastructure and transport in enabling organisations to attract and retain the best talent and maintain a happy workforce. Safeguarding Matthews Yard should be an important strategic objective of the local authority as it will invariably continue to support regeneration efforts in Croydon and help to attract more new businesses and residents to the borough.

We urge you and your colleagues to do everything in your power to support Matthews Yard in their bid to purchase the building in which they are based and to safeguard their independent arts, cultural and community space for many generations to come.

Yours faithfully

Ian Anantharajah, Director, Beats & Eats CIC
Anna Arthur, Founder, Croydonites Festival of New Theatre
Dr Thomas John Bacon, Artistic Director, Tempting Failure
Paul Barnett, Director, ICUK
Shaniqua Benjamin, Founder, Young People Insight
Lorraine Bridges, Director, Bare PR
Karen Cartwright, Co-Owner, Project B
Atif Choudhury, Founder, Cafe Adagio
Alice Cretney, Founder, Turf Projects
Jon Diss, Director, Tanta Recruitment
Maddy Duxbury, Founder, East Croydon Cool
James Fleury, Founder, Nouvague
Mike Herd, Executive Director, Sussex Innovation Centre
Chris Howson, Managing Director, Sleeptwitch
George Ioannou, Founder, Art Rebellion
Adam Jackowski, Director, Brgr&Beer
Emma Jones MBE, Founder, Enterprise Nation
Stephen Kavanagh, Director, Stephen Kavanagh Architects
Neelofar Khan, Director, Zabardast
Owen Kingston, Artistic Director, Parabolic Theatre
Sam Kohn, Director, Nanny Outars
Francois Mazoudier, Founder, TMRW Hub
Tommy Newman, CEO, RSCPP
David Parker, Managing Director, Iceberg Press
Charlotte Price, CoFounder, Errant Theatre
Esther Rees, Founder, Norwood Collective
Neil Ridulfa, Director, Croydon International Film Festival
Katie Rose, Director, Festival of Peace
Mark Russell, Managing Director, Cronx Brewery
Saffron Saunders, Community Manager, Sussex Innovation Centre
Ben Selvaratnam, Managing Director, Freshfields Market
Davina Sirisena, Founding Partner & CEO, Agilesphere
Carrie & Nick Smith, Owners, The Ludoquist
James Stefanopoulos, Director, James Commercial
Reverand Lee Taylor, Priest, Croydon Minster
Chris Thomas, Director, Fuzzy Face Studios
Roger Wade, Director, Boxpark
Thomas Weldon, GM, MeatLiquor Croydon
Cassie Whittell, Head of Festival, Croydon Literary Festival
Jemilea Wisdom-Baako, Founder, Writerz & Scribez CIC
Julia Woollams, CoFounder, Croydonist
Kevin Zuchowski-Morrison, Founder, Rise Gallery

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