As part of the High Street Challenge for All fund from the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, Mountview Theatre working in partnership with the Local Authority Southwak and Tree Shepherd have received funding to deliver the Peckham Business Forum.

Tree Shepherd will be working with local businesses to set up the Peckham Business Forum which will help small independent businesses on Peckham Rye Lane by providing opportunities to break down barriers and grow their businesses. Through business support and one-to-one mentoring led by the team at Tree Shepherd, it will be working with business forum users to provide advice and training on subjects including business resilience, digital marketing, finance among others.

Tree Shepherd will also be producing regular newsletters to businesses in Peckham to update them with news, updates from the council and other key stakeholders in the area, and information on up-and-coming events and training opportunities.

“The team and I have already been stomping the streets to get local businesses engaged” says Sandra Ferguson, CEO of Tree Shepherd. “We want to create a sustainable forum that supports local businesses to thrive. The pandemic has been difficult for entrepreneurs and small businesses, but there also comes huge opportunity which is why we are excited to support those in Peckham to get to the next level and help enhance the local economy.”

The objective of the funding is to help breathe new life into town centres and high streets to help them to flourish and thrive as we emerge from the pandemic. The business forum sits within the Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, who are leading works to strengthen the capacity of the local business community in Peckham’s Rye Lane, supporting the creation of Deft Space – a new enterprise hub – delivering a night-time strategy, improving women’s safety at night, and helping businesses tackle the climate emergency.