We Make Places is a Community Interest Company, based in Liverpool, UK which is writing, living and delivering a manifesto for change across the built environment in Merseyside and beyond.
Communities know what they want, they know where they love and they know what they don’t like. We Make Places, works with and responds to communities of interest and locality to develop sustainable neighbourhood projects and to issue ‘Provocations’. These provocations are a call to action to the establishment and citizens to reconsider ignored, underused or condemned places in a new light. We empower communities to re-imagine and re-purpose spaces to allow them to rise again, becoming healthy, happy, active and loved.
We are a small team who collaborate with some other brilliant people when projects require it:
Steve Threlfall has 20 years experience of designing spaces and places in a host of settings on a national basis. Believing that stakeholders should be involved in the design process of such spaces, he became widely recognised as one of the country’s leading designers of spaces for education & learning and has more recently focused on public realm and commercial projects. Steve teaches Spatial Design at Liverpool JMU part time whilst continuing in his own professional design practice ‘different‘, he was previously Creative Director of Team a go-go/studioF for almost two decades.
Mark Bennett is founding Director of mBed Architects, having previously been an Associate Architect at Michael Cunningham Architects in Liverpool. Mark has worked on new build and refurbishment projects in sectors including education, social and private housing. Mark has also worked on transport projects and his passion is regeneration and reuse of existing structures. He has for many years been a Design tutor at Liverpool University School of Architecture teaching on the undergraduate, post graduate and masters courses.
Toria is a Regeneration professional who has been in the industry for over 10 years. Through her career she’s worked on tremendously exciting projects from the Atlantic Gateway parklands strategy, revitalising the Bridgewater Canal through a successful £3.5 million bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund and blazing a trail through the development of an anti-poverty strategy for Ellesmere Port. In her spare time Toria is a keen footballer and runner.
Kate Stewart is founder of made-here, the retail phenomenon that popped up and stayed up! She has been a facilitator and MD of design studios (working alongside Steve) and theatre companies and has enabled many capital projects in the city and throughout the UK to happen by developing funding campaigns, capital business plans and project teams to deliver them. Kate is frequently invited to talk about the future of high street and independent retail at national conferences and to small groups of independent retailers. Kate is also an established crowdfunding expert with a specialism in civic space projects. In her spare time, Kate works on her own jewellery brand Factory Floor Jewels.
We Make Places is a Community Interest Company, which means that it exists to benefit the community rather than private stakeholders. While we aim for profit, this profit is directed straight back into projects which have a positive community and collective benefit.
We operate within a gradient, charging larger private or public organisations a fee for our work, which then enables us to work alongside smaller community groups or individuals to support them to deliver projects, or events, that make use of the fabric of the city, town or village that they live in, be it a building, area, some derelict land or green space. Our fees for community groups are much lower and occasionally pro bono at the early stages of a project.
We work with the philosophy that a community already has an emerging vision of what they want to achieve, but sometimes are not confident or sure about the steps that are required to help them to realise their dream. Through our fantastic networks of socially minded, experienced and creative Built Environment and Urban Regeneration professionals we can harness this passion and empower people to join the dots and turn their vision into reality.