Category: community

Beyond A Tin Of Food

Noah On Look East

Bute Mills Visit

butemills01

Luton Quakers were pleased to accept an invitation from Chris Curtis to visit Bute Mill , the new headquarters of Youthscape ( previously known as LCET ) a charity set up by churches in Luton to work with disadvantaged young people in Luton.

Bute Mill is an old Victorian flour mill standing in the in the heart of Luton and is one of the few historic buildings still surviving. It came to Chris’s attention one day when standing on a Luton Station platform he gazed across at the buildings which could be seen following the demolition of the bus station. Strangely there was a prominent “For Sale “ notice clearly visible.

Youthscape had outgrown their previous premises and needed to find somewhere new – perhaps this could be the future headquarters – but at a cost of £1 million ? The funds were raised over 2013 , thanks largely to the generosity of individual donors and the hard work of the fund raising team. The next stage is to modernise the inside of the building and adapt it for the needs of Youthscape and of course to raise the money to do so.

Bute Mills was built by Daniel Brown in 1911 – a member of a well known Luton Quaker butemills02family. Many of the Brown family are buried in the Quaker Burial ground in Crawley Green Road. The Mill was one of the earliest steam driven flour mills , no doubt providing most of the flour for an expanding Luton population. . It is in remarkable condition , has five floors ,with huge potential for creating a warm , nurturing environment , which will be of great benefit to the young people involved in Youthscape.

We were inspired to hear of the work of Youthscape , offering hope to young people who have experienced problems such as being excluded from school, being brought up in care , suffering from mental health problems , resorting to self harm. A safe space is provided where they can talk about their problems and often for the first time find someone who wants to listen, without being judgemental.The work of Youthscape is centred in Luton but is now recognised
nationally and has become a UK training centre for changing young people’s lives.

We were impressed that Youthscape offers guidance on spiritual development as well as addressing social and emotional needs. Learning to find a quiet inner space and make time for reflection chimed well with Quakers .

We intend to keep up with the development of Youthscape and offer support where we can.

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