The fundraising achievements of Beat the Streets, local musicians and our amazing audiences are to be permanently recognised in the naming of new accommodation for rough sleepers in the city. A block of eight purpose-built flats in Forest Fields is to be named Akins House after our directors George and Sean Akins. Funds raised from tickets, bar sales and merchandising at each festival have been used in a variety of ways to house and support rough sleepers. The £89,500 raised at the 2023 Festival in January is contributing, for the first time, to the cost of new purpose-built accommodation – helping to meet the overall scheme cost of £1.4m.
The flats will offer a permanent home with personalised support to help each resident live independently. This includes access to drug, alcohol and mental health support and employment guidance. Framework’s Chief Executive Andrew Redfern said: “The contribution of DHP’s Beat the Streets fundraising in 2023 has been essential in enabling this important building project to go ahead. Not only is the sum itself very substantial but it came at a time when the scheme was in doubt had additional funds not been forthcoming. The support for our work with rough sleepers and others, which is expressed through Beat the Streets, is remarkable. By naming our new accommodation Akins House we want to recognise the vision of George and Sean. It is also a tribute to the commitment and support of all our friends at DHP Family and the hundreds of bands, solo artists, technicians, stewards and administrators who have generously given their time and talent over the past five years. Last, but certainly not least, let’s not forget the audiences who have come along to the events – some of them year on year. The success of Beat the Streets goes beyond the funds raised. It has inspired other partners to join our collective effort, amplifying the scope and effectiveness of responses to homelessness and rough sleeping.”
DHP Family’s Managing Director George Akins said: “Everyone at DHP Family is very pleased to have been able to raise more vital funds for Framework this year. We’re incredibly proud to bring the Nottingham music community together each January for such an important cause, and proud of the support that Beat the Streets has funded. It’s brilliant to see the tangible difference the money raised is making to the lives of vulnerable people in our city, particularly with this year’s contribution going towards a permanent home that’s set to help many people over the coming years.”
In the five years since the first Beat the Streets festival in 2018, more than £400,000 has been raised in total. In 2022 Beat the Streets received national recognition by winning the Sarah Nulty Community Impact Award at the UK Festival Awards. More than 300 individuals have already received support fully or partly funded through Beat the Streets. This has ranged from providing emergency shelter, urgent health assessments and periods in specialist supported housing, through to resettlement plans and permanent homes with personalised support. This integrated approach aims to set people up for success and prevent them from falling back into the cycle of repeat homelessness.
Work is about to start at the Akins House site. On Friday 9 June a ground breaking ceremony takes place to mark the start of construction. The flats are due to be completed early in 2024.