About the Project
Providing overnight accommodation since 2018
According to Ministry of Housing Communities & Local Government, 16th Feb 2018, Rough Sleeping is defined as: People sleeping, about to bed down, (sitting on/in or standing next to their bedding) or actually bedded down in the open air (such as on streets, in tents, doorways, parks, bus shelters or encampments). People in buildings or other places not designed for habitation ( such as stairwells, barns, sheds, car parks, cars, derelict boats,
stations or “bashes” which are makeshift shelters often comprising cardboard boxes).
The definition does not include people in hostels or shelters, people in campsites or other sites used for recreational purposes, or organised protest, squatters or travellers.
On a single Autumn night in 2017, 4,751 individuals were counted or estimated to be bedding down outside in England. This has seen an increase of 617 (15 %) from the Autumn of 2016. 76% of those were outside London.
Further demographic data of those recorded as sleeping rough are to be found in the attached report issued by the Ministry of Housing.
Informal discussions with Signpost, a Cirencester based charity supporting homelessness suggested they estimate that at the time of writing (January 2019) approximately 10 people were sleeping rough in and around Cirencester however this does not include “sofa surfers”.
It is also acknowledged that rough sleepers are not always visible as they may sleep out of town in tents, travelling into town when they require.
During the summer months the need for shelter is less urgent with some choosing the lifestyle of sleeping rough and using charities such as Signpost for support with food and drinks.
Signpost also indicate there has been a trend to an increasing level of maturity amongst those sleeping rough as well as an increase in the ratio of females.
Gerry conceived the project in 2017 and commenced fund raising to purchase the Big Yellow Bus and he remains the driving force behind it.
Gerry is a lorry driver and local music/band promoter living in Fairford. He is a working man with little administrative experience but over the years has devoted considerable energy and drive into establishing and leading fund raising events for various causes.
As time passes, the Project has gained the support of many highly committed volunteers who help with the practical needs as well as a group of volunteers who are building the necessary governance arrangements and preparing to move from a not for profit project to a formal charity.