By Jennifer Bowden, Product Manager

Our What’s happening website is now live in Stretford. It helps people find local events and activities that benefit their community.

We’d love you to have a look and let us know what you think. You can leave feedback on the site.

It’s the first digital product we’re trialling as part of Co-operate, an online platform that will help people come together and make things happen in communities. We talked about this at our AGM back in May.

It’s also another way we’re helping to build stronger communities and sits alongside our community plan where we recently launched our spaces campaign.

Starting small in Stretford

Right now weʼre trialling this early version in Stretford so that we can learn and test what works before we move into other areas.

It’s important we don’t assume what communities across the UK need, so we’re building What’s happening co-operatively, working hand in hand with the people of Stretford.

For the last six months we’ve been doing lots of research on what stops people in communities from coming together and making good things happen where they live.

We know from talking to volunteers, organisers, local causes and social entrepreneurs that there’s no shortage of people who want to get involved or help, they just don’t know how.

We believe What’s happening is an easy way for people to come together, get involved and start co-operating in their community.

Events and activities are hard to find

We’ve learnt that it’s not easy to find events and activities right on your doorstep. They’re normally on community notice boards that are often out of date or scattered across different websites and Facebook pages people don’t know exist.

We think by bringing them together in one place we’ll make it easier for people to come together to do something they enjoy that also makes a difference to their local area.

By going along to events where they live people can support the many local groups who do all they can to make their communities better for everyone.

This is the start

We’ve already got some great feedback from the people of Stretford to help us learn and we’re making changes based on what they’re telling us, including where our next trial location should be.

Check out What’s happening at coop.co.uk/co-operate and let us know what you think.

Join the conversation! 10 Comments

  1. Great idea, but my question is:
    If people struggle to find or know about events on various billboards and Facebook, why or how will they know/remember to check this site for the events? Aside from aggregating the events, which is a good start, it would be interesting to hear how you’re going to tackle people discovering the site and repeating visits.
    E.g. Is there a physical/digital board in Stretford that can display these events and the website?

    • We found that the problem was there is no single source of information and information is scattered across Facebook groups, community noticeboards, word of mouth etc. so our solution was to bring all of these together in the form of a digital noticeboard. We’re now working hard to raise awareness of the website via a few different methods from days out speaking to the people of Stretford, sponsoring a digital board in Stretford mall, leaflets and posters and Facebook adverts to name a few. We hope that by building the one place people in the community can find local events and activities that benefit the community will be enough for them to return as we haven’t found anything else like this in any community currently. We’ll be posting regular updates on our progress.

  2. Just what is needed. I saw this on facebook & wondered whether the Lancs. Wildlife Trust & Bolton CVS are a good fit with this? Maybe the next area?

  3. Yep – would love to trial this in Lincolnshire too – but it’s a huge and varied area – so several or more would be great.

  4. It would be good to have a link to add things to this. I’m the store manager of the coop in Stretford and know of a few events happening locally. It would be good to add these in 🙂 otherwise a great idea and website that my staff are telling customers about.

    Also the feedback button on the website doesn’t work.

  5. great idea, Id love to trial this out in the North East. Its exactly what people are looking for. I love it

  6. We now have a Stretford Market-the last Saturday of every month starting from Saturday 27th July. I agree Stretford Foodhall is a great addition to the community and we also have events at Stretford Public hall.

  7. Great idea ! There are a few new business ventures in Stretford e.g. Stretford Foodhall which has street food stalls, a craft beer bar, a coffee counter and uses local products (and stocks Coop Products) Maybe you could include this and other eateries /bars as they are great for meeting people the local community .

    • Agreed, Stretford Foodhall is great – I stumbled across it last Saturday. It would be great to have somewhere that promotes such local ventures more widely.

  8. Good idea. How did the digital team find all of the activities in Stretford?

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Colleague support, Community, Stronger Co-op, Stronger Communities, Succeed together

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