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.


Date: 02 Oct 2008

The Open House Day organized again this year in the Island’s Interpretation Centre on Saturday 20th September 2008 proved to be another success. Approximately 200 people visited the museum on that day.

The venue was very popular with people wishing to experience and understand the history of the Royal Small Arms Factory. One of the highlights of the day was the possibility of exploring the main focal point – the RSA Clock Tower. 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 2009.

Date: 29 Jul 2008

Jack Petchey Dance Group

DL Movement, a dance troupe started by EIYCT members, perform at the awards ceremony.


There was a great turn out for the Jack Petchey Presentation, 25th March 2008. Young people, parents, staff from Oasis UK, Trustee Members, the local press and Geoff Russell-Jones from the Jack Petchey Foundation all came to celebrate the young people’s achievements. Medallions were presented to 3 young people for their accomplishments, Gary Walker received the Leader Award and Norman Ford (the Chairman for EIYCT) accepted a large cheque form the charity. A light buffet was well received by the visitors and young people.

The Jack Petchey Foundation donated £1,000 to the youth centre for the commitment of Gary Walker who was one of the first Trustee’s to set up Enfield Island Youth and Community Trust. This money has recently been awarded to two young people for them to attend a DJ and MC Accredited Course.

This was also an opportunity for our EIV Dance Group to show off their moves in their first ever performance.

Date: 31 Jul 2007

The core theme of this innovative programme is building confidence, self-belief and a can-do attitude. The programme is to be run by Enterprise Enfield ( and initially funding of £70,000 has been allocated by RSA Trust. The intended outcome is for a limited number of quantified females to establish a sustainable business.

Enterprise Enfield wanted to extend the range of practical programmes and support it already provided by taking a holistic approach to personal and business development. To achieve this aim they wanted to introduce an integrated programme that focuses on building the personal qualities needed to deal with the emotional impact of change as well as on the skills needed to make that first step into self-employment. They were aware of RSA Trust’s willingness to support innovative programmes and this has been tailored to meet with our Objectives.

The help will come from theoretical courses, supported by exercises, role plays and case studies. The practical assistance and support will include help with childcare, access to finance (including loans and grants), access to premises (including rental help). Through the programme there will be ongoing coaching, mentioning and networking support. For further details please contact Enterprise Enfield.

Date: 26 Jul 2007
RSA Island Village Ltd is delighted to announce it is able to make an increased donation to its favoured charity.

The Directors of RSA Island Village Ltd, a not for profit company, have decided that they will donate £250,000 to The RSA Trust – a registered charity which is temporarily based at 12, Island Centre Way in the RSA Island Centre. This is £50,000 more than the previous year.

Gary Walker, RSAIV Chairman said…
“I am delighted that our Regeneration Project, which started some 11 years ago, has been able bring back into use part of the old Royal Small Arms Factory and continues to generate surplus funds for our established local charity”.

The Enfield Island Youth and Community Trust (EIYCT) has recently seen their youth centre undergo some extensive redevelopment work to further improve the services available to young people. And on the 15th May we got together to hold an official launch ceremony to celebrate the opening of the new centre. Steve Chalke, MBE and founder of Oasis Trust, performed the official opening, and a plaque is now up in the centre so that we can remember this special day. The evening saw young people mingling with trustees, funding organisations and community groups. We are very grateful to the RSA trust who provided the funding for the redevelopment work and launch evening.

We were also privileged to have Geoff Russell-Jones, from the Jack Petchey foundation at the event. The JPF provide some funding to EIYCT, and as part of this provide youth achievement awards to young people who have made a special contribution to the centre. The young people were each given £200 each to spend on the centre, and choose between them to buy a PlayStation 2, new TV and some sofas for the centre. These young people were given their awards at the event, and a medallion for them to keep.

Group Photo celebrating the reopening of the Enfield Island Village Youth Centre

Group Photo celebrating the reopening of the Enfield Island Village Youth Centre” width=”840″ height=”562″ /> This photo from the day shows (from left to right) youth worker Kat Simmonds, local councillor Ruth Hones, EIYCT trustee Sue Gattrell, Geoff Russell-Jones, Steve Chalke, Gary Walker, youth worker Cecil Gordon with young people from the centre.


Shaun Howlett, 19, said, “This place would be nothing without the youth workers. I never used to like it but now it has a pool table, table tennis and flat screen television. It’s a good place.”

The centre is very popular amongst the young people in Enfield Lock: – and whilst attendance was very high a lack of facilitates restricted the work that could be done. A well designed mezzanine floor installation has not only increased capacity, but also extends the options available to young people using the centre, and many exciting projects are planned as a result of this work.