Climbing commons crowdfunder update

Firstly, THANK YOU! The level of support and enthusiasm shown over the last 5 days speaks volumes. We want to make climbing affordable and accessible for more people in Stroud and your support to date has got this idea off the ground.


  • In just 5 days, we reached 45% of our initial funding target with £16,875 raised.
  • The original deadline to sign the lease was today (Friday 24th May). But, we’ve been offered an extension until the 20th of June to sign the lease to begin on the 1st July.
  • Given the interest shown in the project, we plan to use this time to continue engagement, fundraising and planning for Merrets Mill in a phased way.
  • With the funds raised (and with the assumption that we can raise more) we think we can offer climbing facilities at Merrets Mill from July/August (phase 1), and aim to deliver the full vision later in the year (phase 2).

What does this mean?

Initially, this would mean a scaled-back offer in the first few months while we apply for grant funding to cover the current shortfall. Along with additional money raised through crowdfunding efforts over the coming weeks, we believe we can realise the vision first set out to you.

With the current £17k raised, the initial offer from July/August would be a wall with several different angles with high density spray style setting used with a Stokt app. It will accommodate a range of climbing abilities (subject to securing kit and insurance). We are working hard behind the scenes to enable younger people to climb under supervision following feedback over the last couple of weeks.

See image below for an example of the style of setting.

Based on our community survey with 600 respondents, we’re confident that once the minimum viable unit is built and we begin to operate as a facility, we will have more interest and sign ups. This will allow us to direct the cash flow towards increasing the wall space and cover one year of operational cost.

We know this initially falls short of the fully-funded vision and if you are no longer interested in supporting us, please let us know and we will refund you fully. Please can you do so by no later than Monday 27th May so that we have a clear picture of the remaining funds available for the project.

If you want to see this project succeed but haven’t yet pledged, you can continue to do so here:

Costs for the Minimum Viable Plan

6 months minimum operational costs – £6,000-£8000 (depending on insurance)

Structural Engineer/Wall design – £1,800

We’re looking into successful small Japanese gyms for inspiration and in consultation with Impact Routesetting and Climbing Collective to design the small space well.

Several angled walls with spray style setting  – £7,500 Total

Holds – £2000 (second hand)

Mats – £4500

Construction Materials – £1000

TOTAL FOR MINIMUM PROVISION – Circa £15-17k Insurance pending

The Core Team

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2 responses to “Climbing commons crowdfunder update”

  1. Stuart BUTLER Avatar

    Hello there – Stuart Butler of Radical Stroud here. I’m organising and researching a walk in Slimbridge on the track of old commons and the Diggers in the 17th century. I thought it might be a good idea to promote it as a fund-raiser for you too. Historic experiment with commons linked with a present day initiative. The walk is at
    More details about it will be published as and when.
    Best wishes,

    1. Dave Darby Avatar

      Thanks Stuart. I’ll relay this to the core team. I’m also keen to sit down and properly chat about Stroud’s radical history at some point. Will be in touch once the climbing stuff settles down a bit!