Bearpit Social - The Next Phase

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This project was unsuccessful

Bearpit Social is an independently run café and social hub looking for help to fund some much needed improvements.


Our Mission

After four years of hard work and perseverance the Bearpit Social team has helped transform a neglected central space for the benefit of the local community, making it a safe, clean, inclusive and pleasant place to be. Our aim is to use coffee and good, fresh, homemade food as the impetus to bring people together and help drive social change. We use as much fresh, local, ethical and organic produce as possible and take great pride in everything we serve. Our customers have always been the driving force in sustaining our passion to deliver excellent customer service, great products and delicious food.

Since we started trading we’ve been joined in the space by resident traders like our partner and neighbours, Bear Fruit and Bearritos along with a regular Wednesday lunch time market and countless other pop-ups and charity fundraisers. We are proud to be a part of the Bearpit’s development, and want to continue contributing to the space we call home.


Why We Need Your Help

We love the food and drinks we produce, and we want to get better at it. Your generosity will allow us to make improvements to our kitchen, update our signage and install a security gate to prevent vandalism (in the last 3 months, we've had our access ramp removed and fire damage to the decking).

We're hoping to purchase another fridge to hold more stock, install another washing up area and invest in a bigger, better slow juicer to speed up service.

Most of all we need your help to replace the damaged wood with stainless steel counters and fix our leaking sink.

These improvements will be vital to achieving our next step in scaling up and we would not be able to do it without your help.

We hope these cosmetic improvements and investment in equipment will not only help our business grow, but also enable us to start our planned work placement scheme, further promoting the Bearpit as a social and cultural hotspot for the local community.

Our Story

We have a strong sense of duty to the Bearpit to help transform it into a safe, diverse, welcoming and inclusive space. We are so grateful to our many supporters and customers who have become friends and helped us stay positive even through the toughest times since we started trading.

All the early mornings cleaning up from the nights before, the occasional resistance to our efforts and all the litres and litres of floor cleaner have been worth it if we know we can bring a smile to your faces.

Three and a half years ago, after many long days, sleepless nights, arguments and long conversations Bearpit Social was born.

There was something about the space that won my heart. I've always seen it as its own entity, with its unique character. There was no place like it across Bristol. This strange sunken underpass separated from the social bustle of Stokes Croft and the commercial centre of Broadmead was where I wanted to make my mark in this beautiful city and I've been calling home the last 6 years.

Tina (Bear Fruit) and I started at first sharing a single container, taking inspiration from the community group’s ethos of incremental change. The first year and a half was an unforgettable labour of love. Unconnected to utilities, life revolved around filling water tanks and emptying the waste. Not knowing if proposed developments to the space would ever take place, we were always nervous about making investments that may never see a return. 

When the works finally began and the council said we had to stop trading for 5 weeks  it turned out to be over 5 months. When we returned we opened the shipping container to find mould had ruined most of the interior due to having been closed for long. 

 We were faced with difficult decision, whether to cut our losses or take another risk.

The Bearpit was still half way through construction; we were low on funds from not having traded for so long and working part time jobs to survive.


Two years have passed since then and it feels like a distant memory, we have become more established with fantastic support from our regulars and the Bearpit construction project is finally complete and we can now focus on maintaining the space and fostering an environment everyone can enjoy.


What happens if the target is not reached?

We will fill the Bearpit up with tears. Kidding. We've worked relentlessly hard for the last 3 years and we will keep going til we can. We've put some money aside to help the campaign and all we can do is try out best to reach it.


What happens if smash our target?

We will put on a community event in the Bearpit to bring everyone together with live music and street food, dancing and eating and really make the Bearpit social!


Why support our campaign?

- You would be helping an independent business 

- You would be helping us continue our work to change the Bearpit to a more welcoming & safer space

- You love locally sourced products & suppliers

- You love good coffee

- You love people who chase their dreams and work hard to achieve them

- You love the idea of community coming together to help a business out


Thank you for taking the time to read this, help us by spreading the word and pledge if you can!


This project was created by

Get these rewards

£5 – Bearpit Banquet

3 people want this

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Join us for a feast at our very first Bearpit Banquet, a true collaborative event with Peace Cafe and Bristol Biennal! Read all about it here:

£5 – The Sun Bear Reward

1 person wants this

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A personally designed thank you card

£15 – The Black Bear Reward

6 people want this

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- A personally designed thank you note
- 2 free drinks from our menu

£20 – The Sloth Bear

6 people want this

- A personally designed thank you note
- A Bearpit Social tote bag

£25 – The Spectabled Bear Reward

15 people want this

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- Personally designed thank you card, a
- Branded Bearpit Social KeepCup with a coffee of your choice to go in it

£45 – The Yogi Bear Reward

3 people want this

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- A personally designed thank you note
- Free toastie/ciabatta (one a day) & coffee for the working week (limited to 2 hot drinks a day)!

£50 – The Care Bear Reward

2 people want this

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Limited Edition Bearpit Social Merchandise:
- Personally designed thank you card
- Limited edition mug
- A bag of seasonal filter coffee

£100 – The Pooh Bear Reward

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- Tea & cake party for 10
A special afternoon tea session hosted on the Bearritos bus with a selection of our special range of loose leaf teas and an array of cakes from Pearly King
(Gluten and vegan cakes available)

£150 – The Every Day Bear Reward

4 people want this

Get this reward

- A personalised thank you card
- A tote bag
- Branded Bearpit Social KeepCup
- FREE Juice/Smoothie for a month (Max. 1 day)
- FREE Coffee/Tea for a month (Max. 2 a day)
- Free loose leaf tea or ground filter coffee

£250 – Ursa the Bear Reward

3 people want this

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- A Moroccan Feast for 10 hosted at Bearpit Social

£120 – Baloo's Feast Reward

Get this reward

- An invitation to Miriam's house for a 3 course dinner for 4

£1,000 – The Gobi Bear Reward

Get this reward

- Hire me for the night to cook a feast for your friends
max. 20 (within the Bristol & Bath area)

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