Elaine McGinty


Elaine McGinty along with partner and band member Joe Buckley founded Phoenix Cultural Centre CIC in 2011 to bring a permanent community led, non profit, cultural, arts, live music and training venue into their town that, despite a rich music and diverse multicultural heritage, currently had none.

They put music on the streets, in pubs, cafes; original live music and musicians and mentoring them to more opportunities and ran a free community festival Phoenix Rising. In 2013 they took over a small shop next to the Job Centre and offered space for training and confidence building to people who had life interrupted and needed to get back on their feet. They hosted beginner’s open mics, affordable or free guitar and vocal lessons, writers workshops and health and wellbeing. In 2018 they signed a 2 year lease on a 1000 capacity disused nightclub offered by the local council to make a successful pilot to prove a case for a permanent venue. Thus the Fiery Bird Venue became another part of the Phoenix story and is thriving, offering more workshops, music, training opportunities and supported work experience.

The building is scheduled for demolition; the challenge is on to secure a permanent base in the town, because, you start where you stand and strong communities make kinder choices, both locally and globally.

Elaine McGinty's Project

Phoenix Cultural Centre CIC/Fiery Bird Live Music Venue is a local project to bring a non-profit live music/cultural/arts/training venue to Woking. Though specific to Woking its founders have connected up with other social and community businesses nationally to share practice.

Elaine McGinty's Tweets

"If you unlock the latent talent in our neighbourhoods we wouldn’t need Levelling Up. We wouldn’t need a redistributive economy. We can earn our own keep. That’s what community power is about." https://twitter.com/right_hereUK/status/1555525777571160064

This- SO much more work to do, communities face massive barriers - a debilitating loop of disempowerment then praise for being ‘resilient’ -shouldn’t be put through it at all systems supposed to help communities who are trying to heal themselves inflicts another damage to them

Tonight’s radio show features @TheMumper talking about his extensive work in film & writing and passion for bringing projects to light & in particular #PaulineBoty @RadioWoking @Woking_NewsMail @paulwellerHQ @AbtTheYoungIdea @PaulineBoty #film #arts #communityradio #creativity

Fiery Bird Show feat Mark Baxter https://ladywordsmithbamboozler.wordpress.com/2022/08/03/fiery-bird-show-feat-mark-baxter/

Have a look at our latest newsletter! @wokingcouncil @Woking_NewsMail @BBCSurrey @gr8musicvenues @right_hereUK @PHouseStudios @acm_uk @WokingCollege @weare_woking @welovewoking @grahamsteel6

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