Will Perrin has spoken widely about his experiences with www.kingscrossenvironment.com, a site he set up four years ago “as a desperate measure to help with local civic activism”. In the latest in the Hyperlocal Voices series, he explains how news comes far down their list of priorities, and the importance of real world networks.
Who were the people behind the blog, and what were their backgrounds?
I set it up solo in 2006, local campaigner Stephan joined late in 2006 and Sophie shortly thereafter. The three of us write regularly – me a civil servant for most of my time on the site, Sophie an actor, Stephan a retired media executive.
We had all been active in our communities for many years on a range of issues with very different perspectives. There are four or five others who contribute occasionally and a network of 20 or more folk who send us stuff for the site.
What made you decide to set up the blog?
The site was simply a tool to help co-ordinate civic action on the ground. The site was set up in 2006 as a desperate measure to help with local civic activism.
I was totally overwhelmed with reports, documents, minutes of meetings and was generating a lot of photos of broken things on the street. The council had just created a new resident-led committee for me and the burden was going to increase. Also I kept bumping into loads of other people who were active in the community but no one knew what the others were doing. I knew that the internet was a good way of organising information but wasn’t sure how to do it. Continue reading