Brockley Max is at serious risk of not running next year – or again – unless we can raise enough money to keep it going. Over the 18 years of its existence Brockley Max’s ethos has stayed the same: to celebrate our community’s creative talent, to stay accessible to everyone by keeping most of the events free, and to connect the community to local businesses.
With council cost-cutting an inevitability, we just don’t know if Brockley Max 2020 will happen. But we also know that it’s a well-loved festival we’d all hate to lose. After all, Brockley Max would not happen each year without the support and goodwill of hundreds of volunteers, from performers and event organisers, to stewards and raffle ticket sellers.
To save Brockley Max our best bet is to secure some of the NCIL (Neighbourhood Communities Investment Levy) funding pot. This money exists due to developers being allowed to build in and around Lewisham. The NCIL page here allows you to vote for which projects and spaces should be allocated money.
If you’re new to the area or don’t know what it takes to put on this nine-day, multi-venue festival, here’s the back story.
Nine days of fun we’re all invited to!
Brockley Max began 18 years ago when Moira Tait decided to start a festival to showcase the area’s amazing creative talent. The first ever festival in 2001 saw 12 events take place at two venues. Since then Brockley Max has grown to encompass 80 events at 40 different venues during the now nine-day-long day festival. Events include art exhibitions, theatrical performances, workshops, gigs, poetry readings, a short film festival, local history walks and talks, craft stalls, dances and festival-themed quizzes and trails. We even have our own festival radio station and festival beer!
As the festival has evolved over the years, so has the organising committee. Each September 10 dedicated volunteers, all local residents, start planning the following year’s events.
The Brockley Max festival’s growth means that it’s not just the number of events that has expanded, but also the costs associated with running it.
Over the last 18 years, the committee has managed to find the money to keep the Brockley Max going by diversifying income. Funding now includes sponsorship, advertising, raffle ticket sales, event sales, local assemblies and – until last year – funding from Lewisham Council.
We’ve been lucky enough to secure £1000 for the Opening Night from the Brockley Councillor’s Discretionary Fund and £500 from the Ladywell Councillor’s Discretionary Fund. However, all our Lewisham Council funding has ceased.
Even with the funds from Ladywell and Brockley we are short of £6,500 to cover the cost of printing the festival programme (critical due to the advertising and sponsorship revenue as well as the event information it provides), posters and banners, running the website, equipment hire, art materials, licences and volunteer costs for. We need your help to keep this amazing community festival running next year and beyond.
How you can help
There are a number of ways you can do this:
Sign up to our newsletter to be kept up to date on our campaign;
If you’ve never been to Brockley Max before, the videos below (*) will give you an idea of what it’s all about; and if you’re a festival regular perhaps you’ll spot yourself in the crowd.
* If the video fails to play, please press the pop out button in the top right corner.