Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £10,001 to £25,000


Following the success of Rock the Dock 2018 - the launch of the UK's longest legal graffiti wall - the Boardwalk Foundation CIC brings together urban arts and sports for a event to celebrate rollerskating, BMX, scooting, graffiti and street art, and breakdancing.

Building on the successful partnership that brought about the Marine Parade Graffiti Wall, Boardwalk will stage an event in their purpose built facility inside Ocean Terminal in Leith. Rock the Dock 2018 had a significant impact on the local community, bringing more than 1500 people together to celebrate the opening of the new community space. With an expansion of the Rock the Dock to include the Boardwalk facility, and by incorporating opportunities for the roller skate, roller derby, roller fit, skateboarding, scooting and BMX communities to come together to exchange skills and knowledge. As a Community Interest Company Boardwalk is committed to welcoming and working with both the local community and the communities of interest in the the fields of urban arts and sports.

Boardwalk is in Leith, which is an area of high deprivation (SIMD - within the 5% of the most deprived areas in Scotland), with recent surveys showing that up to 28% of people living in Leith are currently living in poverty. Events like Rock and Roll the Dock involve the local community empowering them to access opportunities to engage in sporting and artistic activities. Engaging in this type of activity is proven to have a positive impact on mental health and well-being. The Boardwalk Foundation is committed to developing our relationship with the local community to encourage community ownership of the space. We want to foster dialogue between people who are already involved in sport and arts and those who have an interest but do not know where, or who to go, to get involved. Boardwalk has the potential to become a hub for these kinds of exchanges and interactions.

Rock and Roll the Dock would comprise of a weekend of workshops, competitions, demonstrations, live art, exhibition dance battles, seminars and workshops. In preparation for the event Boardwalk would offer a wide range of outreach activities to the local community groups. These would provide opportunities for the local community to sample the activities available at the event, and through the Boardwalk on an ongoing basis. Funding from the Aviva Fund would enable all these opportunities to be provided at no cost to the individuals. Funding would also enable Boardwalk to offer subsidised access to the facilities and materials for people to continue to develop their interests for a further 12 months.

The Boardwalk and it's partner organisations have a proven track record in providing high quality, inclusive and sustainable access to urban sports and arts. By engaging with people in the local community over a longer time frame, these activities become much more than 'diversionary' and participants become involved and committed to their communities of interest. This commitment not only helps develop the scene for all the different subcultures involved, but also raises the profile of these pursuits. This in turn promotes and creates further opportunities for the people involved with regard to employment as well as leisure opportunities. An outcome of this is to raise people's aspirations within the local community, and in turn raise the profile of urban arts and sports in Scotland on the world stage.

Rock and Roll the Dock, while still in it's infancy as an important event on the world stage of urban sports and arts, has potential to be not only sustainable but also to provide a legacy for the people of Leith. People outside of the local community will be excited about coming to Leith to participate in an event of this nature. The activities on offer continue to gain wider audiences, and participating in them has the potential to open doors for people in Leith to travel and make connections across the world.

Project Video

The Boardwalk Foundation CIC

Moment of Pride

The Boardwalk Foundation is an organisation that is rooted in the community, we are proud of where we come from and what the people here can achieve. We have strong partnerships with both local organisations and experts in the fields of urban sports and arts.

Location: Ocean Drive, Edinburgh EH6 6JJ, UK