You may not know this but there is a community noticeboard for every postcode across the country.
The project was the brainchild of Tom Sweetman of Stickyboard (near right) , which is four years old this month. Tom was courting his girlfriend Lucy (now Mrs Sweetman) when she moved to a new area. A stranger to the neighbourhood, she wanted to know what was going on and where.
Tom and his brother James (far left) had just set up as website builders and decided to build a village noticeboard for her new area where social groups, businesses, theatres and, indeed, anyone else and everyone else can post their events.
And Stickyboard was born!
James, creative director of the business, said from that humble start in Ealing, there is now a village noticeboard in every one of the 1.67 million postcodes with more than 150,000 local listings and partnerships up and down the country.
Every Ward in London has its village noticeboard and this is made up of local news, where to find the nearest coffee shop, what are the local community groups and where to find them.
And this is not all.
Anyone and everyone can upload, well, anything!
The Sweetman brothers fund this project by donating 50% of the profits from their website-building business.
And, of course, their name on the noticeboard sends others who want a website to their door.
The two sides to the business work well together.
First, the people who use the noticeboard recognise the Stickyboard brand.
Secondly, the business owns the codes used and these elements can be used to help build new websites quickly and easily. James adds that, as the technology progresses, Stickyboard upgrades all the websites it has built, not just the noticeboards.
Thirdly, there is the social aspect on the site. James says Stickyboard works with voluntary groups and other social enterprise firms. How do they police the noticeboards?
“There are the usual filters which do not allow swear words etc but many of our users will help us by telling us if something is wrong with the noticeboard in their area and we can take items down,” said James.
Has the pair a site which they built and which they would recommend anyone who is interested in viewing? James says to view the London Borough of Ealing/involved site.
Currently Stickyboard is crowd-funding.
“We need to grow our business so soon we will have to employ a sales person and we are asking the people who use our noticeboard to help us,” said James.
More business means bigger and better noticeboards, he added.
To donate click here