Aug 302014

Be the change – Cambridge is all about bringing people together to share their ideas, issues and plans of action. We want to tap into the wealth of talent in our communities, bring them together and unleash the power of the people onto our city to make it greater than the sum of our parts.

Vox-popping for the city

In the run up to our event at Anglia Ruskin University on Sat 13th September in Cambridge, Antony Carpen will be out and about in Cambridge filming short ‘vox pop’ interviews inviting people to suggest their ideas for what they think could make Cambridge greater than the sum of our parts. An early edition of these vox-pop clips has already been published. Have a look at the ideas Georgina, Ceri, Kris and Steve have.

Steve Turville of Limoncellos on Mill Road in Cambridge is chairing the Cambridge Lakes Project. (See here). Steve’s ambition is to open up the flooded former quarry just beyond the east end of Mill Road and turn it into a leisure facility. At present, it’s fenced off but is regularly broken into during hot summers when people look for somewhere to cool off. Rather than build more fences, why not respond to the demand and turn it into a safe, accessible community facility? Steve has a well-organised committee working on the project. If you would like to get involved, leave them a message via their website or on Facebook here.

See also our second set of clips

Posters around town

Antony and friends have also been putting up posters around town to promote our event. Many thanks to venues that have allowed us to put posters up – including Urban Larder, Arjuna and CB1 on Mill Road, Hot Numbers Coffee on Gwydir Street, Clowns Cafe on King Street, the Romsey Mill, and CB2 on Norfolk Street.


Antony and Ceri have also been at a number of community events, gatherings and council meetings inviting people to take part in Be the change – Cambridge.

Would you like to appear in a vox-pop clip?

If so, leave us a message on our Facebook page (see here) and Antony meet you to film it. Alternatively, you can film it yourself and email it over to Antony. (antonycarpen [at] gmail [dot] com). The format is:

  • State your name
  • State which part of Cambridge (or beyond) you are from
  • State clearly what change you would like Cambridge to make

Ideally, your idea needs to be

  • something specific to Cambridge (ie not a national, international, philosophical issue)
  • something that you and others can help get involved in
  • something that is not ‘party political’ or religious in nature – it’s got to be inclusive
  • something that is positive – something that isn’t about blaming an individual or group of people

In the run up to the event, we will be featuring other groups and projects featuring individuals and people who have identified an issue and are already being the change they want to see. i.e. they are doing something positive about it. They will also be challenging you to be the change that you want to see in Cambridge.

 Posted by at 5:03 pm
Aug 212014

We have a growing list of our wonderful sponsors, without whom we would not be able to put on the event

Headline sponsors

We are grateful to Cambridge Ahead and Anglia Ruskin University, our event’s headline sponsors.

CA core logo                         Anglia Ruskin Logo RGB colour

Have a look at what Cambridge Ahead is all about in the video below.


Event sponsors

We’d like to thank the following organisations for their support

Cambridge_Network_583a0_450x450    Print     MorganSindall      new-mathworks_logo

Event marketing and management

We are grateful for the services of Cambridge Event Management and Brand Anonymous for helping promote our event and for ensuring everything’s going to run smoothly on the day!

Print         bA-logo-web-black-280px

Event supporters

We’d also like to thank the following for their support

CAP logo 2

UKgovcamp (from web)   Cambridge Hub      kite_tsa


Prospective sponsors

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact Anne Bailey at abailey [at]

Prospective stallholders

If you are interested in having a community stall, please contact Antony Carpen at antonycarpen [at]

Page 9 of our Be the Change – Cambridge Brochure has details of the event sponsorship and stalls packages we have.


Want to join us at Be the Change – Cambridge? Click here to get hold of your ticket

 Posted by at 11:31 pm
Aug 182014

The event is on Saturday 13th September at Anglia Ruskin University, East Road, Cambridge. It starts at 9:30am.

To give you an idea of how the event will be run on the day, we have published a draft agenda. Click here or on the ‘Event Agenda’ tab on the menu bar at just below the ‘Be the change – Cambridge’ logo.

It is still in draft at the moment – we welcome your feedback on it.

  • Which things should we change?
  • Which things should we keep?
  • What in your experience has worked and what has not?

We’ve had some useful feedback prior to publishing the draft agenda – for example reducing the number of afternoon sessions from three to two, and extending the breaks to give you more time to talk to each other. This advice came from a number of you who have been to open space events hosted in London and Birmingham. Our thanks for your advice.

Please drop Antony an email at antonycarpen [at] gmail [dot] com if you have suggestions on improving the draft timetable.


 Posted by at 1:49 am
Aug 072014

If you haven’t already booked your place for our event at Anglia Ruskin University on 13th September with Cambridge Ahead, please click here. Standard tickets are £10 + Eventbrite’s £1.25 booking fee. Free tickets with no booking fees are available for those on low incomes, people under 21 years old and those volunteering to help out at the event.

Digital and social media volunteers – why they will be important

The UKGovCamp network - who were the first to offer financial support to this event, set the standard for large gatherings with social and digital media use at their heart. My first ‘govcamp’ was in early 2011 when I was a civil servant at the Department for Communities and Local Government. Being surrounded by 200 people all passionate about improving public services using social media was an amazing place to be given where the world was over three and a half years ago. That is the sort of creative energy I hope we can unleash in Anglia Ruskin’s state of the art conferencing facilities on their East Road campus. The venue matters, which is why I’m delighted (not just as a former ARU student) that the Vice Chancellor has given his backing to this event as a headline sponsor.

Having an excellent venue is one thing, but having the people and volunteers to get the best out of it is quite another. This is why we are inviting people passionate not just about Cambridge but also about social and digital media to step forward as volunteers on the day. In particular we invite students in further education who might be working towards college programmes or things like the Duke of Edinburgh awards. We want people to post content on relevant social media sites before, during and after the event – ensuring that what we achieve on the day spreads far beyond the venue rooms.

What does digital content from these events look like?

One of the events UKGovCamp supported earlier this year was CommsCamp14 in Birmingham, which I went along to. To summarise:

“So, this is a round-up of 8 videos, 2 vines, 162 pictures, 15 blogs, 8 storifies, 1 infographic and 7 useful links posted as a result of commscamp.”

Click here for the links to all that’s mentioned in the above quotation. To give you an idea of what video footage in a community action context might look like, have a look at the digital video below which was from an event about the future of the Mill Road Depot in Cambridge.

Avril, the woman giving the presentation has experienced homelessness herself. Her insights at the event were a complete education for me. There were things she taught all of us that we were not previously aware of. Watch the video in full for yourself. Ask yourself what new insights you learnt. This indicates one of the many positives I hope will come out of the event: People interacting with others who they otherwise might not meet on a regular basis.

An example of using digital video to share information – again in a Cambridge context is the Cambridge Lakes project. Some of you may not be aware of the three large lakes that were once quarries situated at the far eastern end of Mill Road just beyond the Coldhams Lane Sainsbury’s. Steve Turville who runs Limoncello in Cambridge has been the driving force behind the idea. I filmed this presentation at a community meeting in July 2014.

With up to ten workshops happening simultaneously, having people covering the workshops will be incredibly useful for everyone – especially those who cannot make the event. Despite the not-brilliant quality of my digital filming (I only started properly in the summer), the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

If you are interested in live-reporting via Twitter (we’re also on it @BeTheChangeCam), posting useful links onto our Facebook page, taking photographs and short film clips and/or writing post-event blogposts or even showing guests how to use social media, please get in touch with me – Antony at antonycarpen [at] gmail [dot] com.

An example of filming at an event - in this case me at Hitchin's Rhythms of the World Festival. Photo credit Penny Homer @SocialSoprano

An example of filming at an event – in this case me at Hitchin’s Rhythms of the World Festival. Photo credit Penny Homer @SocialSoprano

 Posted by at 2:40 pm
Aug 042014

Tickets for ‘Be the change – Cambridge’ are now on sale!

The event will take place at Anglia Ruskin University’s East Road, Cambridge campus from 9:30am-5:00pm on Saturday 13th September.

Please go to our Eventbrite page at to book yours.

Standard tickets are £10 + Eventbrite’s fee of £1.25.

We also have free tickets for:

  • Event volunteers (as these events cannot go ahead without kind people helping out on the day)
  • People under 21
  • Concessions – people on low incomes where a standard ticket fee would otherwise prevent them from taking part.

We are grateful to Cambridge Ahead and Anglia Ruskin University, our event’s headline sponsors. We’d also like to thank the following sponsors for their support

For information on sponsorship or community stalls, please see page 9 of our Be the Change Cambridge brochure.

If you’d like to help make Cambridge a city greater than the sum of its parts, come and join us on 13th September  at Anglia Ruskin University

 Posted by at 9:53 am
Aug 012014

Hello everyone

‘Be the change – Cambridge’ is being kindly supported by one of our event supporters, the Cambridge Network who are providing essential logistical support. To ensure we’ve got all our systems in place, tickets will be going on sale on Monday 4 August, not Friday 1 August as previously advertised. We will also be releasing the first batch of free tickets to young people under-21 years old, people on low incomes and people who want to volunteer to help at the event. We don’t want cost to be a barrier for people who really want to take part.

For those of you on Facebook, you can add a reminder of our September event in your calendar here. Once our ticket page is up, there will be options to add to other calendars such as iCal and Google.

In the meantime, enjoy the Cambridge Folk Festival for those of you going!


 Posted by at 1:03 pm