Date: 11 Jun 2010

On 11th June 2010, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II visited Capel Manor College to open the new Queens’ Garden, sponsored by the RSA Trust.

The Queen was taken on a tour of the gardens and college, where she met current students and was presented with a bouquet of flowers.

Then Her Majesty unveiled a plaque signifying the official opening of The Queens’ Garden.


The Queens’ Garden reflects the association between Queen Elizabeth the First and the original Manor of Honeylands and Pentriches that was on the site. The estate was owned by Queen Elizabeth the First and she gifted it to a favourite courtier called William Thorne. The style of the garden follows an Elizabethan Gilly Flower Theme, using modern and traditional plants to reflect the essence of a Garden fit for a Queen.

The Queens’ Garden will be replanted for 2012 to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Trustees Gary Walker, Michael Polledri, Martin Jewell and Mike Wehrmann all attended and were thrilled to be introduced to Her Majesty on the day.

Chairman of the Trust, Gary Walker, said –

‘It was a great privilege to be presented to the Queen which was an honour we had not expected when we sponsored the garden. The RSA Trust was very pleased to sponsor the garden to support the excellent work of Capel Manor’s young students and give the benefit of an invitation to Capel Manor for all the residents of Enfield Island Village.’

Why not visit the Queens’ Garden at Capel Manor? For further information including opening times please visit, or telephone 08456 122 122. The gardens are open for the public to visit daily from March – October.


Photographs, top – bottom:

· Her Majesty reveals the plaque opening the garden

· The RSA Trustees meet the Queen

· The RSA Trustees in the garden – Mike Wehrmann, Michael Polledri, Gary Walker, and Martin Jewell (left – right).

Date: 19 Mar 2010

On Thursday February 4th 2010 a Kids club launched on the Enfield Island Village for Children aged 7-11years. The Children’s Club is run by EIYCT (Enfield Island Youth and Community Trust) in partnership with Oasis. The Club is held in the Community Centre once a week on a Thursday evening between 4.30pm and 6.00pm.

The club was launched due to the EIYCT discovering through consultation that there is a great need for more after school Children’s provision in the Enfield Lock area and in particular for the Children living on the Island. EIYCT already run a Youth Club on the Island for teenagers but they felt more needed to be done too for younger Children.

The club saw a huge response from the Children in the community and saw 35 children attend on the first week (which is the maximum they can hold in the venue at one time) and it currently has a waiting list of 25 Children that only keeps growing as word is spreading!

The club consists of all kinds of Fun ranging from Craft Activities, Cooking, Drama, Games, Sport, and Competitions with a healthy snack each week. Children who attend have a voice in what they would like to engage in, it offers an environment where the Children can have a sense of belonging, build friendships with new children, their social/emotional well being is enhanced and it is strongly achieving key factors around Every Child Matters and the Children and Young People Plan.

Lead worker on the project Rachel Bird says ‘The Children have really engaged and taken ownership of this project and excelled themselves, their behaviour has been great, they just really appreciate that there is an opportunity for them. It gets kids engaging in something positive rather than just hanging around on the streets’.

The club is mainly run by volunteers from the Oasis Church, the County Council also provide a play worker and parents in the local community also volunteer, working together they all want to be part of making this a success and play a part in making a positive contribution to these children and the community itself.

Due to the success of this Club and the fact that more children want to be part of this, EIYCT are looking into this continuing further and what was a 10 week pilot is now going to become a long term project. They are looking to continue this one night a week up until the end of August with some summer activities on offer and then from September the plan is for it to run 2 nights a week. The trust is looking for potential partners to join in with this great exciting community initiative, to help expand the work that is been achieved amongst these youngsters.

Date: 23 Feb 2010

Do you have any memories of the Royal Small Arms Factory?
If so, we would like to hear from you!

We are carrying out an exciting new project at our Interpretation Centre. The aim of this project is to record and display memories of people who worked at the factory, or lived near it.

We will make a video to show in the Interpretation Centre to let others know what life here was really like. We will also make an education pack for local schools.

We need your stories. What was life like living near the factory? Did you work there? What was it like? Were you a member of the union? Did your parents work in the factory too? Do you have anything you might like to show us from the factory?

One of the aims of the RSA Trust is about promoting the history of the site. We want to give the full story of the factory, from precision engineering prowess to social events.

The Interpretation Centre is our ‘museum’. It opened in 2001. You can visit it between 10:00am and 2:00pm Mondays to Fridays. Just ask in the Management Office to be let in. The displays include model machine tools, engineers’ toolsets and examples of some of the factory’s products. This includes a ‘sectioned’ Lee Enfield No. 1 rifle.

You can also learn about our 1783 Thwaites & Reed clock and our bell, Albert. The clock still works and Albert still tolls throughout the day.

Date: 09 Oct 2009

The RSA Island Centre’s Interpretation Centre once again opened its doors to the public on Saturday 19th September 2009, as part of the London Open House Day.

With around 200 people visiting the centre, the day was a great success. The venue was very popular with people wishing to experience and understand the history of the Royal Small Arms Factory. Amongst the many visitors were a number of previous employees of the Small Arms Factory, for whom this place brought back memories of their working life.

The event aimed to foster greater community spirit amongst visitors and residents of the Island and also provided them with a unique opportunity to step back in time and examine what made the Island a good place in which to live, work and play. The event will be repeated in September 2010.

We would like to thank the RSAF Apprentices Association who kindly gave their time to share their immense knowledge and expertise with the guests.

Date: 05 Oct 2009

Funding new Police bikes, 2008

The RSA Trust has awarded a grant of £1238 to the Enfield Lock Safer Neighbourhood Team to purchase two new police bikes to help with their patrols on Enfield Island Village.

PCSO Suzy Tether approached the Trust and requested the funding to purchase the bikes to enable them to respond to calls more quickly and be more efficient.

Suzy said, ‘I have been patrolling Enfield Island Village for over two years so have known Gary Walker and the work carried out by the RSA Trust for a while. They have always supported and praised the work we do around the village and have always encouraged us to make contact with them in any way if it will benefit the residents that live here’.

The Chairman of the RSA Trust, Gary Walker, said ‘The RSA Trust is proud to support, in a small way, the work of the Police on Enfield Island Village. I was delighted when Suzy approached me and explained why having these bikes would help them in their role. We look forward to continuing to work together to create the best possible and safest environment for our community.’

Date: 04 Oct 2009

The RSA Trust has sponsored a second Inspiring Women project, following from the success of the first project in 2008. The 6 month scheme, which is fully funded by a local charity, The RSA Trust, supports women to achieve their dreams and goals by empowering them with the skills, knowledge and confidence they need to start and manage successful businesses in Enfield.

On Wednesday 23rd September, the beneficiaries of the scheme attended a celebratory lunch at the Royal Chase Hotel, Enfield, to mark their successful completion of the Programme. They were presented with certificates by the Chairman of the Trust, Gary Walker.

The unique programme is delivered by Enterprise Enfield and includes a diverse mix of one to one business mentoring, personal mentoring, seminars, residential weekends and networking opportunities. The range of seminars covers areas such as Goal Setting, Assertiveness, Work-life Balance, IT skills, Raising Finance, Marketing, Brand Awareness, Business Planning, Bookkeeping and Website Development. 24 women have just completed the 2009 Programme, of which, 17 have now registered their businesses and 13 are actually trading.

Fazreena Ismail received all the advice, training and personal support she needed to start her sleepwear and lingerie business, Fair Play Products, in East Lodge village, Enfield. She says, ‘The programme has gently but surely guided me in taking all the right steps to help my business take off. I am a 100% certain that had I not had the opportunity to be selected, my business idea would have remained just an idea for a long time to come!’

Kehinde Obidipe, another 2009 delegate, explains how the course empowered her to kick start her cake making business, Cakes by Candy, ‘The Inspiring Women Programme helped me a lot at a time I needed guidance and gave me a great deal of confidence to move forward. It has enabled me to realise that I can do anything I set my mind to do and that knowledge is power. My aim is to run a successful business and become a household name in the cake business by creating cakes that WOW!’

Enterprise Enfield is currently looking for women who are thinking about setting up their own businesses to join its next RSA Trust Inspiring Women Programme.

The next programme will run from January – June 2010. As places are strictly limited a selection process will take place by application form and interview. In order to be eligible to apply for the course, women must be living or looking to start a business in the LB Enfield and firstly, attend a FREE Start Right Introduction to Business for Women Seminar (one day) at Enterprise Enfield. Seminars will be held from 10am- 4pm on 15th October, 9th November and 23rd November. Bookings and further details are available at or by calling 020 8443 5457.

RSA Trust Logo Blue alpha small

Date: 02 Oct 2009

Karen Mercer only started her business, My Coffee Stop, with her partner, Gunter Hollenstein, in February this year, however, My Coffee Stop has just won the Innovation Category in the North and West London Business awards. This is a fantastic achievement for Karen, who also suffers from post-natal depression, having given birth to her second child in January!

Karen’s Coffee Stop, situated at Platform 1, Enfield Chase Station, is much more that just a coffee shop and among other things offers a book-swapping service which raises funds for local charity, The Chickenshed Theatre. The judges of the North and West London Business Awards were impressed with this novel scheme and awarded My Coffee Stop the top prize in the Innovative category – which includes £6,000 worth of advertising to help attract more customers. The business is committed to Fairtrade products (the only coffee shop in Enfield on the Fairtrade Steering Group), and sales have been boosted by an extended service delivering coffees, cakes, muffins and smoothies straight to their customers’ hands on the train, to their workplace or even in their home.

Karen recently completed a free 6 month women’s programme, at Enterprise Enfield, which gave her the knowledge, skills, confidence and support she needed to get her business off the ground. The RSA Trust Inspiring Women Programme is a unique programme delivered by Enterprise Enfield and funded by local charity, The RSA Trust. It includes a diverse mix of one to one business support and advice, personal mentoring, residential weekends and networking opportunities – all designed to empower women to run successful businesses in Enfield . Karen says: –

I can’t believe we have won this fantastic award, our book exchange scheme has really taken off and we are now in talks with publishers to do book signings.

It’s really difficult starting up a business just a month after having a baby and struggling with depression. The support and guidance that I received on the RSA Trust Inspiring Women programme and from Enterprise Enfield has been invaluable. I know that we would not have been able to start our business without this fantastic resource.!’

The next RSA Trust Inspiring Women Programme will run from January – June 2010. Eligible applicants must be living or looking to start a business in the London Borough of Enfield and firstly, attend a FREE Start Right Introduction to Business Seminar for Women (one day) at Enterprise Enfield. Seminars will be held from 10am- 4pm on 15th October, 9th November and 23rd November 2009. Bookings and further details are available at or by calling 020 8443 5457. For more information about My Coffee Stop at Platform 1, Enfield Chace Station visit


Date: 29 Jun 2009

On Tuesday 16th June 2009, there was a lightning strike on or near to the historic clock tower at the RSA Island Centre.

The strike was very powerful and the surge of electricity damaged various alarm systems and the CCTV system at the centre, parts of which had to be repaired or replaced. Fortunately, the clock and bell itself suffered no damage, except that the chime silencer, which stops the clock chiming at night failed and had to be reset.

The clock was made around 1783 by Thwaites & Reed, and is maintained by them to this day. It seems that such historic engineering is very resilient!

Date: 23 Apr 2009

DL Movement

This report was written by Melissa who is a member of DL Movements, which is a dance group that are part of Enfield Island Village Youth Centre.

From September till now the dance group has changed in many ways and became better. We have been involved and contributed to the dance group as individuals. In December at Christmas, some of the dancers performed at the Enfield youth center for a Christmas performance which they had fun. After the Christmas break we felt that things could be improved within our group and in January all of the dancers met up to discuss changes that could be made, this include the name our dance group (Dance Leap to DL Movement), and other improvements.

New people have came and the dance group have bounded and now I fell that we are more than just a dance club that people attend to a club every Thursday, it has developed into a friendship between us all. DL Movement has recently performed in a project in London representing a dance group from Enfield . This trip brought us together and was not only a dance performance but a trip for us to get to know each other and have fun. Also early 2009 our funding was continued for the dance group to carry on and money was won to. This has been used on hoodies for DL Movement; due to it was something that the dancers really wanted. In my point of view in the future DL Movement will achieve more, become known, gain confidence and later enter competitions. Overall DL Movement are more than your think!

By: Melissa.E

The group meets every Thursday 4:30 – 6pm at Island Fitness Gym, focusing on street dance. Anyone can join between the ages of 11 and 19 (however they must be in secondary school or above). They perform in different venues across London every term and all the classes and trips are free!

If you would like more information, please contact Kate on 077033 17570.

Date: 20 Oct 2008

Inspiring Women, 2009

The Group

With the £70,000 funding they were given by the charity, Enterprise Enfield was able to develop and deliver the ‘Inspiring Women Programme’ – a scheme specifically designed to holistically support the development of women to start their own businesses or return to the workplace. So far this has enabled 8 women to start their own businesses and a further 6 women are in the process of setting up. Plus 1 woman has returned to work.

The criteria for women to join the programme included showing enthusiasm and commitment and living in or wishing to start a business in the north London borough of Enfield.

Our chairman, Gary Walker, presenting an award

Tara Grant Receiving an Award fro RSA Trust Chairman Gary Walker

On 10th July all the beneficiaries of the scheme attended a celebratory lunch at the West Lodge Park Hotel in Hadley Wood, to mark their successful completion of the 6 month Programme. They were presented with certificates by the Chairman of the Trust, Gary Walker who remarked:-

‘When we had the idea for this programme we were determined to make a difference and help a group of women achieve their entrepreneurial goal. Meeting them today at this event has demonstrated that Enterprise Enfield has delivered an outstanding programme and the women have more than exceeded our hopes and expectations.’

The atmosphere at the event was one of renewal and confidence and the attendees spoke of the positive change in their lives which had happened throughout this year. Tara Grant, who recently started her own business services venture, gave a moving speech thanking the RSA and Enterprise Enfield for empowering her to take her life forward:-

‘I couldn’t have stood up at this lunch today if it hadn’t been for the confidence this programme has given me. All the sessions have been valuable but the network of support that has been created is a real bonus for this programme.’

The 20 who joined the ‘Inspiring Women Programme’ became part of an innovative 6 month course which gave them all the technical training and personal skills needed to develop a business idea and put it into practice. Considerable research was conducted by Enterprise Enfield before the programme began. The Programme Manager, Ann-Marie Sheridan, visited other schemes around England to learn from their experience. She was told that women-focused programmes that had been funded from Europe were usually highly constrained in how they could run the programmes. They were restricted by targets and form-filling. It was thought that the freedom allowed by RSA to tailor the programme to the specific needs of the women involved was a great benefit of the RSA scheme, as it allowed for a flexible and holistic approach to each of the women’s development.

Two weekends away at country retreats were part of the programme. The RSA provided funding to assist any childcare costs so that all the women were free to take time out from their lives to attend. At one of the residential weekends delegates were treated to a presentation on communication skills and a Colour Me Beautiful specialist also gave them tips on enhancing their personal image.

The RSA Trust and Enterprise Enfield are continuing to provide financial and mentoring support to the women who have now completed the Programme. The RSA Trust has ALSO allocated grants to some of the women to help with various start-up costs, such as the purchase of computers, stock, printing and website development. For example couturier Cheryl Calliste, has been able to occupy two new studio premises and buy machinery for her recently hired assistant to use. Similarly, Paula Martin was able to take accounting exams to add status to her bookkeeping business and is also receiving funding to purchase a laptop and accessories.

Thanks to the RSA Trust’s additional funding to Enterprise Enfield 13 women will now be receiving a further 6 months mentoring to continue the growth of their new businesses and ensure their success.