WELCOME TO THE VENTURE CENTRE
The Venture Centre was established in 1960 and comprises of the oldest OFSTED-registered Adventure Playground in the UK; a purpose-built Steel Panyard and a thriving Community Centre.
Our community centre delivers adult learning, healthy living programmes and community events. We work in partnership with several local organisations, most notably:
Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Catalyst Housing Limited
The Childhood Trust
NHS Grenfell health and Wellbeing Centre
Our playground, the Notting Hill Adventure Playground, offers free supervised adventure play for local children aged 5-15. We complement the play provision with arts and crafts, a sports programme, cooking classes and regular trips.
Our panyard is currently home to the Glissando Steel Orchestra, a world renowned steel band directed by master pan maker, Bertrand Parris.
The beating heart of W10 since 1960. We run an adventure playground, community centre and steel pan yard.
The first adventure playground seems to have been built in Copenhagen in 1943 by landscape architect, C T Sorenson. He noticed the propensity of children left to their own devices to avoid purpose built playgrounds and resort to building sites and waste ground.
He thought that by making waste building materials available, children could have a playground with an element of risk without being life threatening. In pragmatic Scandinavian fashion, he showed that this was also a way to reduce vandalism and other forms of juvenile delinquency.
Notting Hill Adventure playground was originally an old church that was bombed in World War Two. Children took over the space and created various structures and swings out of the debris and various materials left behind in the wreckage. A year later Pat Smythe came and supervised the children to help create a safe space to play.
The playground grew from there and 10 years later the community centre was built to complement the playground. The Notting Hill Adventure Playground is the oldest of its kind in the country, it has been serving the community since 1960.
Combining the country’s oldest adventure playground with a vibrant community centre and London’s only purpose-built steel pan rehearsal room, the Venture Community Association (known locally as “The Venture Centre”) is located in the heart of Golborne, North Kensington.
The mission of the organisation is to provide an improved quality of life in which local people, irrespective of age, gender, sexual orientation, ability, politics, religious or other opinion, are encouraged to come together to access a wide range of opportunities and support, to resolve needs, and to develop aspirations”
OBJECTIVES AND ACTIVITIES FOR THE PUBLIC BENEFIT
The objective of the Venture Centre, as defined in its governing document, is to promote the wellbeing of North Kensington inhabitants and the surrounding neighbourhood. The Centre works with the local authority, statutory providers and other voluntary sector organisations in partnership to relieve poverty, advance education, and provide facilities for recreation and leisure in the interests of social welfare.
The Venture Centre also provides play and other facilities to help educate children and young people and develop their physical, mental and spiritual capacities. Doing so, allows them to mature and become fully functioning members of society.
To achieve its objectives, the organisation does the following:-
• Facilitate a wide range of accessible educational and recreational activities/information for individuals, groups and communities
• Hosts and supports partner organisations that deliver complementary initiatives
• Provides a friendly and safe environment, full of support and friendship
• Organises newsletters and consultation opportunities for our members and local residents
• Provides an open access adventure playground and complementary enrichment programme to enable young people to thrive in all areas
To achieve all it sets out to do, the Venture Centre will continue to work in partnership with statutory, voluntary and community organisations to develop innovative services. This will allow people to come together in education, leisure and recreation programmes.
The trustees confirm that they have referred to the Charity Commission's guidance when reviewing the charity’s objectives and planning future activities. In particular, the Trustees consider how planned activities contribute to the fulfilment of the charity’s objectives.
Meet The Team
Hi I’m William and I am the Director of the Venture Community Association. I head up a fantastic team here and we are all committed to providing a great place and a great welcome in all of our community, adventure play and carnival arts venues. It is a great privilege working in this community and I would love to hear your ideas on what more we could do to help.
Hi, my name is Melissa and I'm the Children's Development Lead. Born and raised in North Kensington, I've had the pleasure of working with children and young people within RBCK for over 20 years. I work to advocate for Play and Children's rights. I welcome you to come, visit and play at any of our 4 adventure playgrounds. Venture Community Association is committed to promoting the principles of play and diversity of our community.
James Oluwaseye Ogundipe
Hello, my name is James and I am the Finance and compliance officer. What I enjoy most about working here is the feeling I get from services we provide and fulfilling the purpose of what a community centre should be. Seeing the changes it makes to individuals and the community is what motivates me to continue doing what we do.
Hey, I am Iyob, the Head of Finance at the Venture Centre. Plenty of experiences working in charity sector brought with me a wealth of knowledge and expertise to manage the finances of charities like Venture centre. I love working at the Venture centre and I am passionate about my work because I know the things we do here makes substantial impact for the betterment or improved quality of life for the local community.
Hi, my name is Pattrina and I am the interim head of operations, I’ve worked in RBKC for fourteen years primarily with children and young people. I love the culture, diversity, history and vibe of North Kensington. I enjoy working with people, am solution focused and resourceful. I love seeing how our services benefit the lives of local people. Pop in for a chat and coffee so I can tell you more.
John D Holden
Hi, my name is John, and I am the Community Development Lead. I am an attorney from the United States who relocated to London in 2021. In addition to my legal work in the states, I was an avid community activist. Upon my relocation, I decided to put all my efforts into building up communities in London. As the Community Development Lead at Venture, I can live out my dream of building up the London community by creating fun and engaging activities, providing food and support services, and developing beneficial community partnerships.
Hello, my name is Rosalind and I am a steward and receptionist. I have watched different types of adults enter the Venture unaware of what venture actually does. Once they have been informed with what venture has to offer they are normally pretty pleased.
Hi my name is Chunekshi and I am the Virtual Venture Assistant. I fell into this
job by chance, idling my time after graduating from university. But this was a happy accident, one that enriches my life by the support I give to the community; the energy I receive from my fantastic team and by the growth I develop as a person. I am in charge of managing Venture's social media and website and I assist John in the maintenance of our events.
Hello, my name is Amanda Bailey, I previously ran the Summer Activities at Venture Centre in 2021 and my current position is the Food & Support Coordinator. I manage deliveries by the Venture Community Association across the borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Cookery, and Meet & Eat sessions
If you would like to find out more about any of the services we offer feel free to fill in the contact form below. Or you can visit the reception desk at the Venture Centre and our friendly staff members will be happy to help.