Sam said: “Spark is about people. When people come together they can make great things happen and this has been a real collective effort. We have 23 businesses and the enthusiasm is incredible. People can have their opinion on the aesthetic but I don’t think people will ever question the fact that there is real passion, enthusiasm and belief in really changing things in the city.”
Piccadilly, where Spark is located, has suffered for a long time from a lack of coherent vision of what it is trying to do and achieve. It is a special part of the city and the Directors of Spark want to help regenerate it and bring people to the area.
“We want to make it a vibrant and must see part of York. We want it to be very much the fabric of what the city is all about. It really is about trying to transform it and do it in a way which puts local people at the heart of it, and also about making sure that all of the community are involved. Including both marginalised and isolated individuals in the York community.”
Though Tom and Sam are the brains behind the operation, hundreds of people have been a part in the creation of Spark. Any element of the site you could point to would have a different person behind it who isn’t one of the boys. The project is a community effort in its truest form, people have truly come together to make Spark happen, which makes it all the more special.
“We are lucky to follow the presence of many people who have set up businesses here and have already started to change the culture of York and what it is like as a city. Without them I don’t know if we would have got a look in. For us now, the aim is to try and be the catalyst in this area and for this to be a model to work”.
Keep up to date with the developments at Spark by visiting http://sparkyork.org