What is the building that the Cube occupies...
The building in which the Cube has been operating for 15 years was originally built in 1916 for the dedicated use of a meeting hall and workshop space for the Bristol Institute of The Deaf and Dumb. Thus lie its deep community roots and vernacular building heritage. It was built for about 1000 pounds with funds raised from the public, patrons and a donation from H.H.Wills of Bristol University. We believe King Square and the factories were bombed during the WWII.
In 1964 some amateur dramaticists applied to the council to make conversions of the factories into a Theatre. Later in the 70s the projection room was added. The Theatre along with spaces in the front of the building at 4 and 5 King Square, including a basement/cellar were the site of the original Bristol Arts Club, later the Bristol Arts Centre.
The Cube took over the site in 1998 after it had been running as the Arts Centre Cinema for about 15 years, operated by Steven Hagan and family.
... and why are we trying to buy it?
Buying the building frees us from a tenant/landlord relationship and a renting economy. With ownership, the sum of the hard work carried out by volunteers will be directly invested in the building, not to increase property value for a private landlord but to enrich the experience of everyone who passes through the Cube.
Ownership of the land and buildings turns the financial value of any work undertaken by volunteers into a concrete resource for the organisation and themselves and other volunteers via the investment it allows in the business rather than the outgoing cost of rent. This investment is flexible and multi-layered, possible to manifest as : money, time, facility, funding, equipment, training, skills, education, mobility, etc.
We have plans for a better office/admin area, a better more spacious bar, solar energy array, better access for those with restricted mobility, a larger lounge area, residency space for visiting artists, improved toilet and WC areas not to mention resources to put on, stage, commission and host better programmes and events.
The building itself was a jerry laboured act of passion and desire and still has some huge potential for remodelling. Walls need breaking down, windows need putting in, ceilings raising - out of the bunker into the light.