Summer Fundraiser launched with beautiful music!

Our community pantry redistributes food that would be wasted, offering it to the community on a pay-as-you-feel basis, informally and with no questions asked and no need for a referral – filling a vital gap in provision of food for those in need.

Last night three lovely local acts launched this summer’s fundraiser for our community pantry – you can rewatch the livestream over on our Facebook page if you’d like to get a taste of what the evening was like.

Thanks to Colin MacPhail for organising the evening and wowing us with his guitar playing and for Mark T Newman and Jonathan Vernam for gracing the stage with him.

We raised nearly £200 to kickstart our fundraiser and get us nearer our first goal of £2500 for the pantry – the cost of providing the indoor space through the summer, with more on offer than just food.

Find out more and support us here

Why a summer fundraiser?

Although there is more focus on people in need in the winter, we’ve noticed an increase in unhoused folks as the weather warms up – and an increase in demand for the pantry.

Our service becomes more vital by the day as the cost of living goes up, so if you are able to help by donating, sharing, volunteering – everything helps! Find out all of the ways you can donate and support here

Running a pantry from our space offers people dignity – pantry users and customers alike come in and use the space with no difference in how you’re treated. We also offer an outdoor pantry, which takes away the need for anyone to interact if they don’t want to – and helps those still wary of indoor spaces because of Covid.

Gill, our volunteer pantry co-ordinator, had this to say about the big amount of fresh veg & bread we picked up last week, all of which has now gone to fill bellies instead of bins:

“It disappears very fast! Specially the outside stuff, as not everyone comes inside. Some folk take months to feel confident enough to come in! In some cases it took 6 months and ice cream.

To everyone contributing in whatever way, however small or big, thankyou. I’ve seen smiles as big as the moon, tears of happiness, been trusted with peoples stories and confidences, been a shoulder to cry on. And it’s only possible with support!

If you can help, please do”

Posted in Behind the scenes, community pantry, Events, Fundraising, Getting involved, Guitar music, Local music, Our crew | Leave a comment

The Wheel of Kindness – paying it forward

Paying it forward – our wheel of kindness and what it means.

We’re so pleased that our ‘Wheel on Kindness’ is now in regular use. Folks dropping in are either paying forward a hot drink or soup for somebody else, or picking up a peg from the wheel to use a ‘payment’ for a drink or lunch.

There’s something beautifully normal about sitting in a cafe having a hot drink or a bowl of homemade soup. One of the things that is difficult for people in crisis – be they vulnerably housed, homeless or in financial difficulty – is the loss of so much that we take for granted. That feeling of being part of the day-to-day life of a community, and not an outsider.

We believe that our space is for everyone, which is why at The Art House you can ‘pay forward’ a hot drink or soup for anyone who can’t afford to pay. The ‘wheel’ enables anyone who needs it to place an order just like any other customer, and the service and welcome is exactly the same, regardless.

This is what mutual aid looks like – generous, warm, open-hearted. We like to think the whole world could look like this.

Thank you so much to each and every person who pays forward drinks, support us as a regular donor or just comes in and buys a cuppa.

These small acts of kindness and connection can mean the world to somebody who is having an awful time.

Posted in Behind the scenes, Community news & views, community pantry, Fundraising, Getting involved, Our philosophy | Leave a comment

Attila the Stockbroker Thursday 17 November 2022


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Hunting Hearts Yuletide Queer


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Charlie Smith and Friends


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Drag Bowie Bingo pt 2


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Tuppenny Bunters – the Hangover Tour


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Professor Elemental – Sat 18/11/22


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Fragile Lucy and Friends // The Art House // 18.03.2023


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A little taster of last night’s gig

Last night we had a wonderful night of live music with local acoustic fingerstyle guitarists (and singers) Colin MacPhail, Jonathan Vernam and Mark T Newman

The gig was to launch our summer fundraiser – find out more here

Thanks to all involved last night for bringing us some brilliant music, a lovely crowd and some very welcome funds for our pantry.

It felt like a real coming-together of the community, you lovely lot.

Here’s a little taste of Jonathan Vernam playing ‘Lost Ship’ – an homage to Will McNicol’s ‘Lighthouse’.



Posted in Community news & views, community pantry, Events, Fundraising, Getting involved, Guitar music, Local music, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Moving Voices special guest announcement: Ri Baroche

We’re thrilled to welcome Ri Baroche back to our stage as our special guest for Moving Voices on 30 June 2023 following their splendid Drag ‘n’ Drop show here earlier this year.

Friday 30 June from 7pm – book here

Ri Baroche is a non-binary writer, performer and musician.

They’re fascinated by the meeting of ideas and themes that aren’t expected to co-exist, and bring the motto “Throw things together to see what they do” to everything they do.

They’ve performed from big festival stages to the top deck of the Isle of Wight ferry, and have written for stage, page and recently on a new adaptation of opera Riders To The Sea.

Their alter-shego, Hariya Hazaway, can be seen performing disgracefully and distastefully around the UK.

They will be touring their current in-development show ‘Drag ‘n’ Drop!’, a music/comedy/spoken word drag show about gender, identity, climate change and quantum physics, across November 2023.

About Moving Voices:

Moving Voices is Southampton’s longest running open mic running on the last Friday monthly, with some bonus editions some mid months and special days. Featuring monthly special guests and loyal regulars alongside total newcomers, this evening never fails to inspire and uplift with voices that will move you to tears and laughter.

Featuring poetry, song, storytelling and comedy, open mic’ers are asked to keep performances to about 5 minutes or less so that everyone gets a chance to perform. Depending on numbers, you may be able to have another slot in the second half.

Moving Voices is hosted by RKP, poet and painter.

Upcoming events with Ri:

Writing for Queer Joy – Southampton Central Library, Sat 10 June 10am

Writing for Queer Joy – online, Weds 20 June 2023 7pm

Queer Joy – writers showcase – The Stage Door Southampton, Weds 28 June 2023 7pm

Posted in Comedy, Events, Gig announcements, LGBTQ, Local music, Moving Voices, Poetry, Spoken word & theatre, What's on | Leave a comment