City Matters Edition 067

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CITYMATTERS.LONDON 14 - 27 February 2018 | Page 7<br />

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CITYMATTERS.LONDON 14 - 27 February 2018 | Page 13

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Page 16 | 14 - 27 February 2018<br />


Page 20 | 14 - 27 February 2018<br />


CITYMATTERS.LONDON 14 - 27 February 2018 | Page 21<br />

Social <strong>Matters</strong><br />


Stressed out? Discover<br />

a new Square Mile oasis<br />

AN oasis is defined as ‘a refuge, relief or pleasant<br />

change from what is usual, annoying, or difficult’.<br />

And it’s exactly what entering Shoe Lane Library<br />

felt like when the Dragon Café opened its doors<br />

last Thursday, writes Monika Cvorak.<br />

On any given day, the library on the corner of<br />

Shoe Lane and Little New Street already serves as<br />

an escape from the hustle and bustle of the Square<br />

Mile’s financial district for many a <strong>City</strong> worker<br />

and resident. Today, however, as they leave the<br />

grey concrete and noisy streets behind them and<br />

descend into the library, visitors are greeted by<br />

much more than merely literature.<br />

“Hello, and welcome to the Dragon Café. Would<br />

you like a free massage?” a young woman says to<br />

every person entering the library, pointing to her<br />

left where a few visitors are getting a shoulder<br />

rub. Next to them, two people are sat on chairs<br />

chatting, while a sign above them says “Problem-<br />

Solving Booth”.<br />

Anxiety<br />

In the opposite corner, a lecture is taking place<br />

with the listeners tucking into their pre-packed<br />

lunches. A few feet over, others are running<br />

around with crayons, paint, brushes and paper.<br />

Close to the entrance, there is a bathtub filled with<br />

rubber ducks.<br />

“So that’s a Lunch & Learn discussion on a new<br />

mental wellbeing and motivation app. Over there<br />

they’re setting up a mask-making workshop, and<br />

if you pick up the shower head of the bathtub,<br />

you can hear other people’s stories on how they<br />

deal with stress and anxiety, and record your own<br />

story,” explains Declan McGill from the Mental<br />

Fight Club, the charity that brought London the<br />

first Dragon Café, situated in Borough, in 2002.<br />

“Usually facilities for mental wellbeing are very<br />

clinical, sterile, kind of frightening and not creative<br />

or inspiring at all,” says Declan. “The aim of the<br />

Dragon Café was to offer people an open space<br />

where they can feel safe to relax and recharge. Now<br />

we’ve brought that to the <strong>City</strong>.”<br />

While there is more of a buzz today than one<br />

would usually expect in a library, the atmosphere<br />

is warm, welcoming, and homey.<br />

“This is only the beginning, we have a lot of very<br />

different events coming up later in the day,” he says<br />

with enthusiasm: “We’ve got magicians coming in,<br />

a terrarium making workshop, Tai Chi and Kung<br />

Fu classes combined with mindfulness sessions…<br />

ALMOST one in every five workers in the <strong>City</strong><br />

of London in 2016 originated from a European<br />

country – the highest figure since records began.<br />

Data from the Office for National Statistics,<br />

requested by the Corporation, shows that 18%<br />

of the Square Mile’s workforce derived from the<br />

European Economic Area (EEA).<br />

Looking at the professional services sector<br />

specifically, data reveals that 12% of the<br />

workforce derived from Europe – more than<br />

double the share of four years previous when<br />

European workers in the sector stood at just 5%.<br />

Separately, the financial and insurance<br />

sector is currently staffed by 13% continental<br />

workers, which, compared to the previous<br />

decade, when the figure was just 8%, marks a<br />

significant increase. Policy chairman Catherine<br />

mental health focus:<br />

at the Dragon Café<br />

We really make sure there’s something for<br />

everyone.” The beauty of the Dragon Café concept<br />

is that there is no pressure, says Declan: “Visitors<br />

can take as much or as little as they like. We want<br />

them to know that they are in control. They can<br />

just observe what’s going on, reflect or practice<br />

mindfulness on their own, or engage in everything<br />

on offer, it’s up to them.”<br />

Despite increased efforts in recent years to remove<br />

the stigma around mental wellbeing, it continues to<br />

be a prevalent issue amongst <strong>City</strong> workers.<br />

A 2017 survey by the <strong>City</strong> Mental Health Alliance<br />

found that 47% of respondents have experienced<br />

mental health difficulties while working for their<br />

current employer. Only half of them disclosed this<br />

to someone at work.<br />

The café is the latest venture in a series of events<br />

and campaigns launched by the <strong>City</strong> of London to<br />

tackle poor mental health in the Square Mile.<br />

“What’s brilliant about this collaboration is that<br />

we can team up our knowledge of <strong>City</strong> workers and<br />

residents and make sure the programme the café<br />

offers is tailored exactly to the needs of the locals,”<br />

says Xenia Koumi from Business Healthy, a<br />

<strong>City</strong>-led initiative encouraging businesses to meet<br />

the health and wellbeing needs of their workers.<br />

“We know that a lot of workers in the <strong>City</strong> are<br />

male, middle aged, and at risk of cardiovascular<br />

diseases. They can also be a difficult group to<br />

reach, in terms of getting them to speak up about<br />

their mental health,” says Xenia. “So we’re keeping<br />

Importance of EU workers<br />

is crystal clear to the Corp<br />

McGuinness believes the figure “crystalizes the<br />

importance” of European workers to the UK’s<br />

financial centre.<br />

“Many Europeans are in limbo over their<br />

future status here, and firms are unclear as<br />

to who they can employ, which is having<br />

repercussions on decision-making across the<br />

continent,” she said.<br />

“Securing a good trade deal without a sound<br />

immigration policy would be a hollow victory,<br />

so it’s vital this is addressed sooner rather than<br />

later.<br />

“At the end of last year government made<br />

progress on EU citizens’ rights, which meant<br />

we were able to move to move to Phase 2 of<br />

negotiations. We need to continue to build on<br />

this momentum.”<br />

that in mind when setting up the programme. I<br />

think what distinguishes this Dragon Café is the<br />

fact that we’re really targeting the local population,<br />

trying to bring together workers and residents. In<br />

that sense, it’s kind of a hyperlocal service.”<br />

The Dragon Café in the <strong>City</strong> will run fortnightly<br />

on Thursdays between noon and 8.30pm until<br />

12 July. The next one is billed to take place on<br />

22 February.<br />

For more details on upcoming programmes, go<br />

to dragoncafeinthecity.com.<br />

Artizan Street Library<br />

1 Artizan St, E1 7AF<br />

Barbican Library<br />

Level 2, Barbican Centre, Silk Street, EC2Y 8DS<br />

Bishopsgate Institute Library<br />

230 Bishopsgate, EC2M 4QH<br />

<strong>City</strong> of London Information Centre<br />

St. Paul’s Churchyard, EC4M 8BX<br />

Coffee Stall<br />

In front of St Mary Abchurch,<br />

Abchurch Lane, EC4N 7BA<br />

Coppa Club<br />

4 St. Paul’s Churchyard, EC4M 8AY<br />

El Vino Wine Merchant<br />

6 Martin Lane, Cannon St, EC4R 0DP<br />

Fuller’s - The Counting House<br />

50 Cornhill, EC3V 3PD<br />

Fuller’s - The Old Bank of England<br />

194 Fleet St, EC4A 2LT<br />

Giddy Up Coffee<br />

Fortune Street Park, EC1Y 0SB<br />

Jeeves Dry Cleaners<br />

131 Fleet St, EC4A 2BH<br />

J Rogers & Sons - Shoe Repair<br />

28 Liverpool St, EC2M 7PD<br />

Guildhall Library<br />

Aldermanbury, EC2V 7HH<br />

Merchant House<br />

13 Well Court, EC4M 9DN<br />

8 Bride Court, EC4Y 8DU<br />

You’ll be able to pick up your<br />

copy every fortnight from one<br />

of the above collection points.<br />

Firms fired up for<br />

Dragon Awards<br />

BUSINESSES tackling social problems in<br />

London are being called on to enter this<br />

year’s Lord Mayor’s Dragon Awards – the<br />

Capital’s top responsible business gongs.<br />

The annual ceremony celebrates<br />

companies large and small that are<br />

improving people’s lives; from increasing<br />

the diversity of their workforce to<br />

volunteering in the community to helping<br />

social enterprises to grow.<br />

The best of the bunch will contest six<br />

awards, with shortlisted firms invited to<br />

Mansion House later this year when the<br />

winners will be announced in the company of<br />

Charles Bowman.<br />

“These awards celebrate the excellent work<br />

of business supporting communities across<br />

London and tackling social issues,” said the<br />

Lord Mayor.<br />

Opportunity<br />

“We will recognise firms that are<br />

improving society through their responsible<br />

business programmes and leading the way for<br />

others.<br />

“London’s businesses should be more vocal<br />

about the positive work they do for society –<br />

and these awards are a fantastic opportunity<br />

to do just that.<br />

“I am particularly pleased, this year, to<br />

launch a new award: the Lord Mayor’s Award<br />

– Business of Trust Champion.”<br />

Over the last 30 years, responsible<br />

businesses which have applied to the Dragon<br />

Awards have helped an estimated 10million<br />

people, mobilising 200,000 business<br />

volunteers and giving nearly £250m in<br />

donations and in-kind support to London’s<br />

communities.<br />

Nincom Soup<br />

Old Street Station, EC1Y 1BE<br />

Oh’Lola<br />

58 Hatton Garden, EC1N 8LS<br />

Pod Good Food<br />

75 King William Street, EC4N 7BE<br />

dragonawards.org.uk<br />

www.citymatters.london<br />

Protestant Truth Society Inc - Book Shop<br />

184 Fleet St, EC4A 2HJ<br />

Rome Coffee Cart<br />

3 Fleet Place, EC4M 7RD<br />

Scott’s Shoe Repair & Dry Cleaners<br />

<strong>City</strong> Thameslink Holborn Concourse, EC4M 7RA<br />

65 Ludgate Hill, EC4M 7JH<br />

Old Street Station, EC1Y 1BE<br />

Shoe Lane Library<br />

Little Hill House, Little New Street, EC4A 3JR<br />

Spitalfields Market E1<br />

Brushfield Street, Spitalfields, E1 6AA<br />

Sweetings Restaurant<br />

39 Queen Victoria St, EC4N 4SF<br />

Temple Brew House<br />

46 Essex St, WC2R 3JF<br />

The Franklin Building<br />

124 Goswell Road, EC1V 7DP<br />

The M Bar<br />

48-51 Leadenhall Market, EC3V 1LT<br />

The Natural Kitchen<br />

15-17 New St Square, Fetter Lane, EC4A 3AP<br />

176 Aldersgate St, EC1A 4HR<br />

Waterstones<br />

Leadenhall Market,<br />

1-3 Whittington Ave, EC3V 1PJ<br />

Ye Old Cheshire Cheese<br />

145 Fleet Street, EC4A 2BU



The London Borough of Tower Hamlets is reviewing its current<br />

Statement of Licensing Policy and undertaking statutory<br />

consultation in respect of this review. The consultation<br />

began on 12 January, and will run for 12 weeks finishing at<br />

12 midnight on 10 April 2018.<br />

If you wish to take part in this consultation please visit<br />

the link to our survey below. You can also contact the<br />

Licensing Team via email at Licensing@towerhamlets.gov.uk<br />

or Telephone 020 7364 5008.<br />


Page 24 | 14 - 27 February 2018<br />


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EPC: C<br />

Approximately: 197.4 sq m (2125 sq ft) Leasehold<br />

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