Eleanor and Rosie met while working at the Shunt Lounge in London Bridge and immediately established a creative spark. Discovering shared values and a potent complementary skill set they soon became a dynamic duo. Alongside an incredible production team they grafted hard to deliver the weekly metamorphosis of the space, hosting hundreds of live art performances and transforming 70,000 square feet of underground vaults into a magical playground for thousands of audience members.
Keen to democratise this learning up North Eleanor packed up her creative kit bag and went back to her home city where she spent a year putting the Bradford Playhouse on the map. Thousands of local people poured into the venue – many for the very first time – and co-created some pretty wild art. (The tremors of this cultural earthquake can still be felt in the city today). Feeling a calling to put thirty years of creative jigsaw pieces into one almighty vision she founded The Brick Box in 2010, and knew the perfect person to co-pilot the adventure. Rosie enthusiastically joined the company as co-director and the rest continues to make history.
Initially setting up in Brixton Village with a cafe and events programme led by local people, they ignited the space (sometimes literally) and soon won major funding from the GLA to set up a second offer in Tooting market. After a gritty two years of implementing innovative solutions to the challenges of ailing markets they forged ahead, wrestling with derelict buildings, taking over docks and flyovers, producing people led festivals, immersing themselves in council estates and running riot in theatres. In 2017 they took the company up to Bradford where their creative toolbox has whittled out a new cultural venue and carved them a crucial role at the heart of Bradford’s City of Culture 2025 bid.
Their projects have straddled regeneration, placemaking, meanwhile use, spatial practice, creative entrepreneurialism, community empowerment, culture driven economies and democratised the production of art throughout a critical decade for the UK. Championed as industry pioneers by funders, commissioners and peers alike, they have earned their position as the boisterous new kids on the block. Using their unique brand of charming absurdity – always mixed with meticulous intent – they build audiences, authentically connect with communities and instigate change.