About CrowdFund Leicester

About CrowdFund Leicester

Connecting people, ideas, and support from the crowd to make Leicester an even better place!

CrowdFundLeicester is all about connecting people, communities, businesses and resources to good ideas that will improve our City. This initiative is a great way to get people, including the City Mayor, to back your project idea and help make it a reality through crowdfunding. We are looking for community groups and voluntary organisations to share innovative ideas that will help shape your community for the better. You will know best about what will work in your local area, so why not share your idea and let others join in? What would make a difference to your local area and bring people together? Upload your idea here and see how you can make it happen.

Areas of interest

Sport & Play Parks & Gardens Arts & Culture Buildings Food & Farming Streets & Infrastructure
Helped the environment Boosted the economy Increased volunteering, jobs & education Supported arts, culture & heritage Promoted activity & leisure

Created by Leicester City Mayor

I was elected as City Mayor in 2011 and re-elected in 2015. During this time I have been working hard to make Leicester a confident, vibrant city where people are proud to live, study, work or visit. 

CrowdFundLeicester helps local groups and organisations to come together to liven up and improve our civic spaces, helping turn innovative and exciting ideas into practical reality.

Peter Soulsby - City Mayor

More Information

The City Mayor was first elected in 2011, and re-elected in 2015, with the vision to make Leicester a confident city where everyone is proud to live, work and visit. Since the City Mayor was elected there have been many successful regeneration projects throughout Leicester, including Jubilee Square, Haymarket Bus Station and many more. CrowdFund Leicester is the City Mayor's initiative to engage local communities, people, businesses and voluntary organisations to contribute in shaping Leicester for the better. 

With the emergence of social media and crowdfunding platforms such as Spacehive, it is now possible to engage with people like never before. If you have an idea why not share it with the City Mayor and the crowd here to gain support and make your idea a reality. By working together we can make Leicester an even better place that is shaped and used by people, businesses and other stakeholders in the city. 

In particular, the City Mayor is looking for project ideas to do more with land and spaces across the city that would benefit from being used in better ways for the good of our communities. Some land in Council ownership has already been identified and is included below. It doesn't have to stop there though. You might know of land elsewhere, perhaps owned by someone other than the Council. With the right idea, the right permissions and support from the crowd we can do something that works for us all.  

The City Mayor has also made available the Community Engagement Fund, which invites ideas and projects that can help eliminate discrimination, harassment and victimisation; advance equality of opportunity; and foster good relations between groups and communities. With £100,000 available, the City Mayor will make pledges of up to £10,000 for projects that meet the more detailed requirements. 

The City Mayor is looking for project ideas to do more with land and spaces across the city that would benefit from being used in betters ways for the good of our communities. If you have a project idea to develop an area of land, no matter how big or small, the City Mayor is keen to hear it. The best project ideas could lead to local groups or organisations taking responsibility for this land in the short to medium term, or, in some cases, permanently.

To express your interest in a piece of land, or to enquire about any other land owned by Leicester City Council please download and return this form to support@spacehive.com.

We've already found a few pieces of land owned by the Council that we'd like to showcase here. Whether you have a big idea for the whole area or a proposal for part of the land, whatever you are thinking, please let us know. Some of these areas of land are described in more detail below. 

Remember if you have a project idea you will need to ensure you have the right permissions from the land owner before you pitch your idea and begin to crowdfund.  

Bedale Drive 

The land at Bedale Drive is situated within Abbey Ward and currently occupies an area that could be used to fulfil your project idea. Bedale Drive offers a large stretch of land situated just off Bedale Drive, between Cotley Road and Beaumont Leys Lane. This land is surrounded by trees which act as a buffer between the industrial estate and residential area. We're keen to hear your ideas to make sure we do something better with this space.  

Gwendolen Gardens 

Gwendolen Gardens is located within Spinney Hills Ward and offers a wonderful stretch of land between Gwendolen Road and St Saviours Road. The land currently has a footpath running through the centre of the land with three identified zones which offers seating areas. This area of land would provide a great opportunity for your project idea. 

Kingsmead Road Green Spaces 

This large area of green space is located within Knighton Ward and can be accessed via Kingsmead Road or Church Lane. The area of land has a lot of potential with Saffron Brook running through the land which is surrounded by green open space. You will also find the Church of Saint Mary Magdalen Knighton, Knighton Free Church, Knighton Bowling Club and a children's play park within close proximity to the land. 

Her Ladyships Covert

Her Ladyships Covert can be found just off Swinford Avenue within the Eyres Monsell Ward. Here you will find a large area of woodland situated amongst a residential area. A natural pathway has been formed within the woodland area which attracts various insects, birds and other animals. This area would be ideal for nature project ideas. 

The City Mayor is looking to fund activities, initiatives and projects that can make a real difference to the quality of life for communities across Leicester, particularly ones that are normally considered “underserved”, “hard to reach” or “difficult to engage”. 

Project ideas should help eliminate discrimination, harassment and victimisation; advance equality of opportunity; and foster good relations between groups and communities. Innovative projects, addressing a genuine need that isn't being met in any other way could receive up to £10,000 from the City Mayor.

We want to hear from those who can help the city develop and embed a real sense of shared identity, common purpose and civic responsibility; refresh and renew the City Council's relations with the Voluntary and Community Sector; and enable flexible, imaginative and innovative responses to challenges and opportunities facing the City Council, citizens and communities of Leicester. Together we can make Leicester even better!

Funding Criteria 

In summary, the City Mayor will pledge up to £10,000 per project if the eligibility and community engagement fund criteria requirements are met. The City Mayor will pledge up to 50% of your target project requirement, so you will need to gain the support of the crowd. 


We can only fund projects that  will be delivered by a constituted organisation. If you are an individual and have an idea you will need to join or form an organisation to develop and share your proposal. We can help with this where necessary. 

Types of suitable organisations can include: 

  • Charitable incorporated organisation; 
  • Community interest company; 
  • Company limited by guarantee;
  • Registered charity; 
  • Trust; 
  • Unincorporate association.

The organisation will be required to:

  • Enter into a contractual agreement with Leicester City Council;
  • Provide bank details; 
  • Provide charity or company number, if relevant;  
  • Deliver the project. 

If you are have a project idea to develop civic space within Leicester, no matter how big or small, or have an idea for the Community Engagement Fund then why not share it with us? There are six steps to making your idea a reality: 

1. Prepare 
We recommended you talk with people in the community to gather their thoughts and attract interest. It may be that these discussions will alter, or shape your project idea, it may also raise alternative ideas. Have in mind the strengths and weaknesses of your project idea in comparison to other ideas. 

2. Create your project page
You need to create a project page on Spacehive. This is your pitch to gain support and funding from the crowd and the City Mayor. Explain your vision clearly, showcase your passion for the project and highlight how it will have a positive impact within the community to attract pledges. 

If your project idea relates to a piece of land please contact themayor@leicester.gov.uk to express your interest before you begin this process. 

3. Pitch your idea to CrowdFundLeicester 
When you have created your project page it will automatically be matched to any relevant Spacehive Movements that already exist. You may qualify for support and funds from other organisations who like what you're proposing. This type of support is often based on the impact areas of the projects and the region in which the project is based. The owner of the Movement can accept or reject projects onto their Movements.

For the Community Engagement Fund, to receive a pledge of up to £10,000 from the City Mayor you will need to meet the eligibility criteria - please have a good look through the requirements of that fund. 

4. Verify 
Before you can start fundraising on Spacehive, your project must be verified. Project verification is important to ensuring projects are supported and can succeed. 

5. Crowdfund 
Get as many people as possible to support your idea, whether in materials, time or cash. It does not matter whether a pledge is worth £2 or £2,000 - CrowdFundLeicester is about engaging people within their community to shape Leicester. The number of pledges you receive will reflect the support and success of your project idea. 

6. Deliver 
If you attract enough pledges to meet your target funding it is time to make it happen! 


  • your idea: can you clearly describe your project, highlight the purpose it seeks to achieve and illustrate the benefits it will have in the community? Are there any other ideas that could be explored? What makes your idea worthy of support from the crowd and City Mayor?
  • your location: where will you deliver your project? Do people within the community support the idea? Have you sought permission from the land owner? 
  • your budget: how much is it going to cost to deliver your project idea? Remember you will only have the funds that you set as your target to fulfil your project. It is essential therefore that you ensure your budget is realistic.
  • your team: attracting support from the crowd to support your project idea and delivering the project can be a very time consuming and tricky process. Do you have a support team to help you fulfil your project idea? What does each member of the team bring? Will you need to attract help from other members of the community? 


  • the local community: speak with members of the community to gain their support and share your project idea with others. This will be beneficial to attracting pledges and ensuring your idea becomes a reality. There may also be members of the community that can help share some of the workload.
  • businesses: highlight the benefits of your project idea to the community to gain pledges from businesses in cash, time or materials. Forming relationships can benefit you and the business; the business can promote your project idea and you can also promote their business.


  • social media: set up a Twitter handle and/or Facebook page to share your idea, gain support and keep backers informed with where you are at and what you require to fulfil your project. 

What is civic crowdfunding? 
Crowdfunding allows anyone with a project idea to share it openly and seek support from the crowd, whether in cash or in kind, to make the idea become a reality. Project ideas may be permanent, for example a playground, or temporary, such as an event, and can include revenue as well as capital costs.

The City Mayor in partnership with Spacehive, the world's first crowdfunding website dedicated to civic spaces, is looking for project ideas that will benefit local communities. Crowd Fund Leicester allows voluntary and community organisations to share their project idea and attract pledges from local residents, businesses and the City Mayor. 

Civic crowdfunding is about bringing people together to shape their community and benefit from it. It allows for people to be involved every step of the way, from having an idea, crowdfunding and delivering the project.  Crowdfunding is all about sharing your project idea to attract interest and support, every pledge counts. Backers can pledge as much or as little as they want and will only be committed once the target funds have been met.

Are there any fees to use Spacehive?
Spacehive do not charge a fee to register your project or make donations.

However, Spacehive does charge projects some fees but only if they successfully reach their fundraising target. All fees are included within the project budget and clearly displayed.

There is an admin fee of 5% of the total project cost that pays for web site maintenance and for independent experts vetting projects.

Then there are transaction fees charged to projects by the secure payment systems that Spacehive uses - PayPal and GoCardless. Transaction fees are estimated on a ‘worst case scenario’ - all funders use the more expensive payment system (PayPal) and all funders make pledges of £20 (attracts the highest fee rate of 3.4% + 20 pence per pledge). In reality the funding scenario is more favourable with many funders using Go Cardless and pledging higher amounts which can bring the fee down to 1.4%.

No transaction fees will be charged for cash or in-kind contributions secured by projects before the start of their online campaign on Spacehive.

What is project verification?
Anyone can create a project idea on Spacehive but fulfilling it may be tricky. Spacehive will therefore need to verify your project to ensure that it is viable before you can proceed with crowdfunding. This will ensure that the potential funders are protected, your project is more likely to succeed and confidence is maintained within the system. 

Project verification is dedicated to ensuring your project is supported and can succeed. Verifiers will assess your project idea to ensure it is viable and that you have all the relevant permissions to deliver it. 

What documents will I need?
This will vary depending on the project, it is important therefore that you find out which permissions are relevant to your project. In the first instance you need an in-principle consent from the landowner to support the project. Various planning permissions and licenses may also be required and could be secured as the project progresses, but you need to be clear in your pitch that these will need to be resolved.

How much should I set as my target? 
Your target funding will depend on your project but remember it will be a set amount that you will need to use to deliver the project.

It is advised that you take considerable time to ascertain quotes for large items or services and check the cost of smaller items with reputable suppliers. It is important to be realistic in how much you will need to set as your target to fulfil the project and ensure you are getting value for money. 

You also need to think about VAT – often not included on quotes, but you will probably have to pay this in the first place even if you are registered to claim it back later.

You should plan some contingency into your budget for unforeseen extras / issues. This should be between about 5-10% revenue depending on the project.

Remember, all of your crowdfunding pledges will act as flexible revenue cash which can be used to support anything in your budget. Backers may want to see a clear plan of where or what their pledge will contribute to. 

What is the difference between capital and revenue expenditure?

Capital refers to funds used to build, refurbish or fit out indoor and/or outdoor structures or spaces. This can include:

  • Construction materials, labour, tools and safety equipment
  • Fees for architects or designers
  • Purchased equipment such as  computers, staging or kitchen equipment
  • Furniture
  • Utilities costs relating to building or creating the project
  • Licenses related to building the project
  • Skip hire and waste removal

Revenue refers to funds that can be used day-to-day costs. This can include:

  • Rent and business rates
  • Event costs such as hire of stages, sound equipment or entertainment
  • Marketing materials such as posters and leaflets
  • Website or social media costs
  • Staff
  • Utilities costs related to running the project
  • Consumables for running the project, such as stationary, raw materials for food and drink
  • Maintenance costs

Can I receive more than my target? 
No, you can only receive the total target you identify as requiring to fulfil your project. It is essential therefore that you have thoroughly costed how much it will cost to deliver the project. 

What happens if I do not reach my target? 
If you do not receive pledges to meet your target within the specified period your project cannot proceed. It is advised therefore that you share your idea within the community to get an understanding of whether the project will be supported and is something that will benefit the community. 

How can I pitch my idea to the City Mayor? 
Your project page will automatically be matched to CrowdFundLeicester and will be reviewed by the City Mayor's Office to see whether you are eligible to receive a pledge from the City Mayor. 

If I reach my target how will I receive my pledges?
If you successfully reach your funding target, pledges from the crowd will usually be transferred to you the week after you hit your target. 

If you have received a pledge from the City Mayor whether as a piece of land or cash donation a member from the City Mayor's Office will contact you within 10 working days of hitting your target to highlight how you will receive the pledge. 

Do I have to report on progress? 
Yes. It is good practice to keep your supporters updated as you progress with your project. They will want to know how you are getting on and celebrate in the success. If you are having difficulty, the crowd may also be able to help you out.

If the City Mayor has made a pledge to your project it will also be expected that you provide regular progress updates to the City Mayor's Office and keep a record of your achievements. This will be useful if you apply for funding in the future as it will demonstrate that you can deliver a project and the impact is has made. 

What happens when my project has been delivered?
When you have successfully delivered your project you will be required carry out a simple evaluation of your project at the end which shows how you have delivered against your initial ambition, issues that may have arose along the way and lessons you learned as part of the overall experience.

My question has not been answered: 
If your question has not been covered please contact support@spacehive.com 

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