Tarner is a neighbourhood in central Brighton that runs up Albion and Carlton Hill from Valley Gardens to Queens Park Road. Over 2,600 people live here and 60% of these in social housing, much of which is blocks of flats, which bring the usual difficulties of maintaining clean and safe communal areas. This is particularly challenging in such a central location where crime figures are twice the national average. Tarner Park provides some vital green space to the area, though communal outdoor space is lacking overall in the area. This shortage of green space has however given rise to many local greening projects and community gardens, which have also helped mitigate the poor air quality caused by major traffic routes on the perimeter and large scale developments in the neighbourhood.
29% of adults in Tarner have a life-limiting illness and 77% are living in what is a health deprivation hot spot. More than 10% claim benefits as a result of their mental ill health so concerns about isolation and loneliness have led to lots of collaborative projects across sheltered schemes in partnership with organisations such as South East Dance, Impetus, LGBT Switchboard and others. The area has no bus routes running through it and 66% of households have no car. Given the steep hill, this reduces people’s ability to access facilities across the neighbourhood. As a result many activities are held hyper-locally, e.g. in tenant meeting rooms.
Tarner is a culturally and ethnically diverse community with 22% of residents born outside of the UK, the majority coming from the Middle East, Asia or Africa. 86% of those surveyed in The Place survey report getting on well with people from different backgrounds. In response to this our BME psycho social project is piloting a multicultural health programme in the area.
27% of children in Tarner are living in poverty and a great deal of the community activity focusses on improving their start in life. This includes services by the council children’s centre, along with community run nursery, after school and youth clubs.
TDC in Tarner
TDC has been working in Tarner since 2014 and we have helped new and emerging groups like the Amex Area Neighbourhood Action Forum and Phoenix Resident’s Association as well as networking them through Tarner Community Forum and the community newsletter. We have also begun consulting people for the Neighbourhood Action Plan – a consistent concern is around substance dealing, misuse and the related anti-social behaviour.
“Thank you for setting up a joint meeting with the council so we can share our views”, “So happy we were listened to”
“It was fantastic to see so many BME groups/orgs getting involved today. I hope they will be part of the organising group for next years”
John – Festival Chair
That was great, can we watch Frozen next time and singalong”
Young Boy from Film Club
"I would like to say thank you to Sue for her inspiration in getting the tenants motivated to increase their activities. The taster sessions were very acceptable and we hope to have more in the future"
Charles Penrose - Resident of Sloane Court
"We have appreciated what Sue has done; we could not have done what we have without her. We would like to carry on with her to help us set up more events. Nothing has been too much for her, Sue has helped with everything"
Irene Ainsley-Hobbs - Resident of Sloane Court
Annual Youth Festival, Tarner
The Tarner Festival takes place each year at Tarner Park, a free event demonstrating the vibrancy and diversity of the community. Young performers from AudioActive and South East Dance showcase their talents on the music and dance stages and there is plenty of fun for the whole family including kids activities, food, drink, mobile skate ramps, mural painting, raffle, BBQ, bouncy Castle, kids games and much more. TDC contributes by encouraging community groups to participate and we also help with promoting the event in the community newsletter. Members of the TDC team are in attendance each year telling people about the Healthy Neighbourhood Fund and other health promotion services.
Phoenix Residents Community Association
We supported local people in the Phoenix area to set up and constitute a tenants' and residents’ association. The group have been meeting regularly and successfully tackled issues around parking and graffiti as well as hosting a community BBQ. They’ve also worked with Brighton & Hove City Council to consult the residents on using funds from the restorative justice team to do up the ball park on the estate.
They now have 5 key officers and 4 committee members and not only that but they are now officially part of the Hanover and Elm Grove Communities Forum as an Association.
Sheltered Housing Schemes - Eastern Road
Support is given to the following sheltered schemes to look at ways of maximising use of their communal areas and to encourage participation in social activities. Social Clubs at Sloane Court (BHCC) and Evelyn Glennie (Anchor) have been supported to apply for funding to increase what they offer to their residents. At Evelyn Glennie Court they have started a weekly gentle exercise class which is attended by an average of 12 people per session. The Social Club at Sloane Court are linking with Leech Court and using their communal lounge to host entertainment, tea afternoons, quizzes and a supper club. Lavender House have embarked on a gardening project to grow vegetables.
Resident's mural on the Phoenix Gallery
A group of young artists aged 10 to 18 from the Phoenix estate, completed a mural on the side of the Phoenix Brighton gallery in Waterloo Place. The project was run with support from the Brighton and Hove City Council’s restorative communities fund and is part of Phoenix’s commitment to expanding art into the wider community. The young people attended a series of workshops at Phoenix Brighton to design a mural that “expresses a collective identity and uses imagery that they feel represents them”.
Albion Community Association community garden
The developer of Brook mead extra care housing association in Albion Street handed over an area of raised beds to a group of local residents who created a community garden.
Most of those involved had little prior experience of gardening but created a beautiful space including bee-friendly flowers, insect hotels, bird boxes and a feeder plus an area now used by residents for relaxation. The garden has given those who live and work in the area a new sense of pride in their neighbourhood and an opportunity to bring residents of all ethnicities and ages together in friendships.
Our partners - local community groups
Albion Hill Social Club
All Different, All Equal – Healthy Neighbourhood Fund
Millwood Centre Management Committee
Tarner Area Partnership – Public Themed Community Meetings
Puffin Community Nursery
Sheltered housing social groups
Phoenix Estate Residents Association
Dorset Mews Residents Association
Albion Hill Community Garden
Amex Area Neighbourhood Action Group
Voluntary & Public service partners
Early Childhood Project – Healthy Children, Healthy Families, Healthy Community!
Tarner Community Project – Children’s and Youth Services & Festival – url.
Brighton Unemployed Centre Families Project
Brighton Youth Centre
Carlton Hill Primary School
Tarner Children’s Centre
The Resource Centre
BHCC Communities Team
TDC BME engagement team