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    Breyer Group initiated and led a project to give a new-look to the Community Centre on Forest Road, in Hackney.

    Breyer Group's dedicated Community Development Team decided to take matters (and paint brushes) into their own hands!


Based upon the popular Do-It-Yourself Home Improvement show ‘Changing Rooms’, Breyer Group initiated and led on a similar project that resulted in a new-look Community Centre on Forest Road, in Hackney.

On Wednesday July 15th 2009, the Forest Road Young People’s Centre received a comprehensive make-over in just one day, thanks to a dedicated team of volunteers led by Breyer Group on behalf of Circle 33 Housing Trust, and its contractor partners Apollo and Rok.

Forest Road Young People’s Centre is managed through Circle 33’s lead of the Holly Street Partnership, which is committed to delivering and achieving excellent services for young people in the Holly Street area, and has made a huge positive impact in the community. However, the centre and its surrounding area were in need of a complete face lift. Breyer Group (through its dedicated Community Development Team) decided to take matters (and paint brushes) into their own hands and devised a strategy that would capitalize on the services provided via its work force and those of the framework contractors all within the space of just one day!

Each voluntary group consisted of Apprentice’s to Assistant Directors from all stakeholders and Roy Ramrutton, Community Development Officer for the Breyer Group Plc, who organised the day with Neil Watts (Group Partnering Manager), said: “It was a brilliant experience working alongside each other and the team spirit was fantastic. We all work in different sectors of our respective companies and usually only see each other at meetings, so this was a great opportunity to get to know each other better as well as doing something great for our community and showing that we are taking our corporate social responsibility seriously.”

Similar to the hit series, Changing Rooms, each team was allocated a room which was to be cleaned, prepped and re-decorated by 5pm. To add to the experience of the day, Breyer Group incorporated a series of activities/exercises that would test everyone’s general knowledge on the centre, the area and the Construction industry. Other activities included identifying the mystery where members of each team had to unravel the riddle and find the items that were hidden around the centre.

To fuel healthy competition each losing team would face a penalty or a forfeit too which included painting a room using just 1.5inch brush and with their less familiar left hand! The Changing Rooms style Initiative was a huge success and received a high volume of praise from all concerned.
Bob Sander, Assistant Director Property Services for Circle 33, added: “It was a really positive day – we are all passionate about enhancing the life chances and wanted to do something positive as a team building activity. The centre is vital for young people in the area, providing them with somewhere they can relax, meet friends, and take part in positive activities such as accredited music and dance courses and the fresh new look will add to this.” Nickie Wilson, Partnership Development Manager of the Centre, said “From all of us at Forest Road Young People’s Centre It was a fun positive day and thank you for giving us a centre which looks brand new”. The whole day was a fantastic success for a host of reasons which were summed up by Anthony Silk, Group Procurement Manager, Circle33. “In taking on the responsibility of a “Changing Rooms” team building event, Breyer Group achieved a number of tangible benefits but built upon an enjoyable event for all.

  • The Youth Centre supporting our Holly Street Partnership now has four rooms that have been brightened up offering a conducive environment for the groups using these facilities
  • The gardens and entrance have been recovered offering the centre an opportunity to maintain a welcoming environment for the local community and also removing “hiding spaces” which have in the past intimidated individuals from using these facilities.
  • Breyer Group has promoted Circle 33 and its Alliance Partners with the Management and users of the Centre and meeting their commitments for Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Breyer Group has managed to get an array of individuals from the Alliance, from Apprentice’s to Assistant Directors, working together for a common goal and all getting “stuck in”.
  • Breyer Group has brought together the team and through structured exercises throughout the day helped to bring a greater awareness of each other.
  • Through Breyer Groups effective planning, we have delivered an objective and goal and helped our corporate drive for enhancing Life Chances to the Youth Community of the Holly Street area.

On behalf of Circle 33 Housing Trust, I would like to extend our thanks to Breyer Group and for providing us with the facilities to build the team, through a fun event which actually delivered real value to the community we serve.