hackshopMapify and Paddington Development Trust (PDT) joined forces this week to host Church Street’s first HackShop; held at The Cockpit theatre. There was a fantastic turnout with a real mix of Church Street service providers and active community members, all coming to catch up and exchange local news over lunch.

We thought that there was no better place but the monthly ‘Network Lunch’ event to host a taster session of our first HackShop in Church Street. Attendees were asked to make their way around Mapify’s pop up exhibition and engage with our five HackShop activities. The interactive workshop replicated some of the key functions that the new Mapify website will include. The enthusiastic participation gave us the opportunity to test the theories behind these functions and gather crucial feedback.

Tilley speaks at the start of the Network Lunch
Tilley speaks at the start of the Network Lunch

HackShop provided a means for the Mapify team to explore what really counts in the Church Street Community. We discovered some of the Mapify features were proving more valuable than others. Church Street service providers suggested we place more emphasis on local projects in the community profiles page of Mapify and create a space for users to post job opportunities.

The HackShop resource sharing activity enabled us to potentially match and connect service providers. For example, St Paul’s Church offering a community space for training, consultation and meetings to organisations seeking affordable room and venue hire.


The resource sharing cards HackShop activity
The resource sharing cards HackShop activity

The rich array of comments from the HackShop clearly highlights the energy and local talent that currently exists in Church Street.

Alfies has been in Church Street since in 1976, being one of the UK’s best known antiques centres we have always attracted customers as well as new businesses to the area. We are home to 75 independent shops and many of the antique traders in Church Street started out in Alfies. The majority of our traders shop here and therefore support local shops. (Alfies Antiques)

Mapify is a tool that strives to be co-designed with the local community, for the local community.

We want to thank all those who took part in the event, providing us with valuable feedback that will be incorporated into the new site. In particular we would like to thank PDT, our first HackShop would not have reached the same success, had it not been for their incredible efforts to maintain and champion community spirit in Church Street.

Wednesday’s collaboration was crucial for us and our design process, we want to ensure that the community play a role in developing Mapify.

More HackShop events to come…

Well organised and hugely successful – found it very useful. (Lena Choudary Salter)