Project Viability Grant
The Art Deco former department store now known as Provision House on the High Street in Dudley was first opened in 1939. For decades, the building served the Dudley community as a co-operative emporium – a store dedicated to providing its customer-owners with quality goods at the lowest prices possible. But much of the floor space at locally listed Provision House fell out of use following the closure of the co-operative in 1983. In 2019, Dudley-based charity Loaves N’ Fishes took over use of the ground floor with plans to bring the upper floors back into use.
Loaves N’ Fishes was established in 2014 to support the relief of poverty and its effects for the communities of Dudley, Sandwell, and the wider Black Country by providing furniture, clothing, a food bank service, and a volunteer training programme. By expanding their occupancy of Provision House, Loaves N’ Fishes plan to build a hub for local organisations similarly committed to improving the lives of Dudley area residents, including a community café, co-working and art spaces.
The charity was awarded a Project Viability Grant in March 2020 under Transforming Places through Heritage to consider the opportunities and constraints of expanding their presence at Provision House and which options will best serve the needs and priorities of the Dudley community.