Community project Spark:York has secured funding totalling £150,000 from the Business Enterprise Fund (BEF).
York-born and bred Tom McKenzie and Sam Leach had a vision to establish affordable retail space in the city, add value to the community and create social change, something the pair are affecting with the use of old shipping containers.
When travelling around Europe they were inspired by box parks and community and street food markets and just 18 months later, with support from BEF, the retail and food hub made from shipping containers is making a huge impact on the Piccadilly area of York. The three £50k loans, of which one has already been paid back, were used for building works and pulling the site together which is now home to 23 independent businesses.
Mr McKenzie said he wanted to bring 100 jobs to the area.