Category Archives: News

Triathlon Target Reached – Thank You!

Thanks to your swift and generous response, we have reached the fundraising target of £2,000 set for the Blenheim Triathlon. That is a great show of support for our team of first-time triathletes!
The money will go towards building a children’s library, which will cost around £12,000. Thank you to our Kensal Rise Library and Daniels’ Teams and to the brilliant help from Malorees school parents, especially Giles Deards.

FKRL Daniels & Elaine Triatholon May 2018

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Actors’ Night 8pm Sunday 15 July

First time in the library!

Our ever popular cast of local actors and other talents supporting the library.

Still time to watch the World Cup and come to this event to calm down or celebrate, or both!

FKRL Actors night poster 15 July 2018

Tickets Eventbrite: or at C&D wines (opposite the library) or on the door £10

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We are recruiting!


Kensal Rise Library and Community Centre Manager

Salary £22,822 – 30 Hours per week

The Trustees of the Kensal Rise Library and Community Centre are looking to appoint a suitable person to act as Library and Community Centre Manager.

The Kensal Rise Library and Community Centre is a unique and truly community driven resource developed over several years from a campaign to save an historically significant building and library from closure. Through a huge effort, the Friends of Kensal Rise Library have successfully fought, rescued and renovated the distinctive facility and are now in a position to open to the public to serve our thriving and diverse community.

Kensal Rise is a vibrant community of huge contrast at the heart of North West London with a strongly unique population reflecting the diversity, environmental, ethnic and social make-up of London.

The post will entail a close working relationship with the Trustees and volunteers, whilst being answerable to the Chair and Board of Trustees. The successful applicant will be responsible for the operational service offer and to develop sustainable income streams, whilst ensuring a programme of activities to guarantee community engagement and collaboration.

Candidates should demonstrate an ability to communicate, lead and manage groups and be able to establish a true community rapport through stakeholder commitment. The responsibility for the day-to-day financial business of the library, the centre’s resources and assets, will be a key expectation.

For further details, a full job description, person specification and an application pack, please contact


Closing date for applications: Monday 9th July 2018

Interview date: W/B 16th July 2018

Start date: July/August 2018


 The Trustees of the Kensal Rise Library and Community Centre are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable young adults and expect all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. A successful applicant will be subject to an enhanced DBS check prior to taking the post.

The Trustees of the Kensal Rise Library and Community Centre are an equal opportunities employer and committed to enabling full equality of opportunity.

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FKRL Daniels & Elaine Triatholon May 2018

Blenheim Palace Triathlon June 3rd.

Our supporters and friends are going on the run…… and cycle and swim …..

Members of Daniels Estate Agents Kensal Rise team will be swapping their office suits for swimsuits in June when they take part in the Blenheim Palace Triathlon in aid of the Friends of Kensal Rise Library (FKRL).

We need about £70,000 to complete the refurbishment of the library: the children’s section; shelves; furniture.

They’ll be joining parents and supporters of the local Malorees Junior School’s Triathlon team on June 3 to take on the three-disciplined event.

Kyle Clark, Mat Plocharski, Umar Ahmed and Leigh Givnan, will all be taking part in their first triathlons which will see them take on a 5k run, 20k bike ride and a 750-metre swim. They will be well supported by Elaine Sheppard and Joanne Woodall from the Friends of Kensal Rise Library.

The event takes place within the beautiful grounds of Blenheim Palace and any money the Daniels’ Team raises will be donated to support the Friends of Kensal Rise Library’s ongoing efforts.
The Malorees’ Team will be fundraising to buy computer equipment for the school.

Kyle Clark said: “We were talking in the office about ways of raising money for the FKRL as we’ve been long-time supporters of them. Someone suggested doing something energetic and healthy and we were then approached by the Malorees’ Triathlon Team so their timing was perfect.

“We are all getting into training and trying to lose a few pounds where necessary. It’s a good event for a great cause and we’ll be doing our best on the day.”

Stephanie Schonfield from the Friends of Kensal Rise Library (FKRL) said: “We’re delighted that Daniels and FKRL  have taken up the challenge of the triathlon to raise funds for Kensal Rise Community Library. They are all longstanding supporters of what we are trying to achieve here, and we wish them lots of luck with their training efforts and on the day. I hope lots of people will be inspired to sponsor them.”

To sponsor the team’s efforts please visit:



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May 2018 Update

Our May Market on May 5th raised £925 towards our final refurbishment push.
We still need about £70,000 to completely finish the works – these include the children’s library, furniture and shelving.
We are getting there by raising funds through local events and grant applications.
Thanks to all who helped at the May Market, donated and attended to make it another very successful FKRL community event – strengthening our links with local schools, businesses and local radio, Kilburn 2 Kensal, as well as local residents.
There was a terrific exhibition of the winners and runners up from our Library Card Competition by students from Queens Park Community School and Capital City Academy. FKRL QPCS library card winners May 2018
The May Market had many elements, including a public consultation, an antiquarian book stall – and even a popular mini-massage retreat (!).
FKRL Paula & Doris head massage May Market 2018
Satisfied customers of the Massage Retreat!
A  recent application to Brent Council’s Love Where You Live has been successful and we have been awarded the maximum of £500. This will go towards our ‘Official Opening’ in September. Two other awards are pending decisions.
You can help our fundraising efforts by sponsoring our fantastic Triathlon Team at the Blenheim Triathlon.  The target is £2,000; the current total is £430.  It’s easy to sponsor –  just click on this link:
As well as these fundraising events the library is also available for hire and we have had our first customers and bookings as far as November, including NHS Well-Being Workshops.
We have also held our first ‘Storytime’ in the library, with children from a local nursery.
Our May Market efforts were part of the ‘Community Business Weekend’, run nationally by Power to Change – which has previously awarded us £75,500.

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MAY 5th Market

FKRL May 5 final poster jpg
As well as  over 20 stalls and a ‘mini-massage retreat’, the May Market will include an exhibition of QPCS and Capital City students’ entries for our library-card competition. Entries were  judged by Paul Stolper, who represents some of the country’s most famous living artists e.g. Damien Hirst, Peter Blake and Brian Eno.
The library-card competition is sponsored by Queen’s Park Books.
This is an exciting collaboration between Kensal Rise Community  Library, local schools and business – and the contemporary British art scene.

Kensal Rise Community Library receives no public funding, but has to generate its own revenue – so with the May Market on Saturday May 5th, it is joining other community businesses around the country to celebrate the third annual Community Business Weekend.

Aimed at shining a light on the 7,000 community businesses across England, Community Business Weekend offers a unique opportunity for local people to visit and see how they can get involved.


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Update March 2018

1. November 30th 2017: we signed our lease – on Mark Twain’s birthday.

FKRL Lease signing 30 No 2017 no1Signing our lease.

2. December 2017: our library refurbishment works began.

First phase of works to be completed by end of February 2018. This means all the basics will be in place, including flooring (we have restored the original parquet), heating, lighting, plumbing, the ceiling, etc. The Second Phase will then begin and will be completed dependent on funding. The library space, though not yet fully furnished, will be useable and available for hire from March 2018.

Fully appointing and furnishing the library may take a little longer, but we will use the space to continue fundraising to meet final refurbishment requirements.FKRL parquet floor restored Jan 2017Our newly restored parquet floor.

3. Our Operations Committee continue to meet at 7.30 pm on the first Thursday of each month in the Long Room behind St Martin’s Church on Mortimer Rd. Kensal Green. This group works on the operational needs of the library; books; policies; volunteers; cataloguing; supporting events; IT; communications.

We particularly need more IT support and website design expertise.

Please contact: if you would like to become involved.

4. Events: ‘Lionel Shriver In Conversation with Tim Lott’ on Sunday January 28th was very successful, raising over £1000 for the library refurbishment. Attended by over 120 people it was thought-provoking and sparked some lively debate.FKRL Lionel Shriver Jan 2018 MB 2

Lionel Shriver signing books at our January event.

Thanks to Graham Noyce for letting us have the event at St Martins, Alex at Berkmann Wines for donating the bar and all the volunteers who helped on the night. We are also grateful to the raffle prize donors: Tulip Siddiq MP, The Paradise, Jivita Ayurveda and Straker Hair.

Other events are being planned and we look forward to holding our first in the library.

5. Funding applications and grants: We have been successful with our bids for funds to both the Community Infrastructure Levy and the Harvist Trust. From the former we have two grants totalling £95,000 and from the latter £5,000. All will go towards the refurbishment of the library space, computers and books.

6.  Support from local businesses, schools and organisations: we would like to thank the incredible generosity of all our local friends, including: Daniels Real Estate; The Paradise Pub Kensal Green; The Royal Oak Pub Harlesden; The Whippet Inn Kensal Green; MDS Builders London; Topps Tiles; Cresswell Carpets; Curry Nights; Messapica; Tesco; Nandos; The Parlour; Nuffield Health;Howdens Kitchens; Rajvel Deco (paint); Jivita Ayurveda; Gracelands; Scarlet & Violet; Bel and Nev; Berkmann Wines; Borough Wines; St Martins; Kensal Green Under Fives; Malorees Parents; QPCS; Princess Freds Parents; Brent Library Service; our Ward Councillors from Kensal Green, Brondesbury Park and Queens Park.


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Lionel Shriver – Sunday 28 January

Award-winning writer, Lionel Shriver, will be talking to fellow author and journalist Tim Lott.
FKRL Lionel Shriver cropped pic, by Eamonn McCabe dec2017

A prolific journalist, Lionel Shriver has authored twelve novels, including the bestsellers The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047, Big Brother, So Much for ThatThe Post-Birthday World, and the Orange-Prize winner We Need to Talk About Kevin (a 2011 feature film starring Tilda Swinton). She won the 2014 BBC National Short Story Award. Her novella and story collection Property is scheduled for spring 2018.  Her work has been translated into 30 languages. Lionel will also answer questions and sign her books.

19.30 – 22.00 pm St Martins Church, Mortimer Rd Kensal Green,
NW10 5SN
Bar and nibbles available.
All proceeds go to Kensal Rise Community Library.
(Photo: Eamon McCabe Harper Collins)

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We have signed our lease!

On Mark Twain’s birthday, 30 November 2017, we signed the lease for the library.

Thank you to all those who have helped us get to this point, especially our local community who have supported the campaign to save the library for almost seven years. Proud of all of us!

(Pics Brendan Bailey)

FKRL Lease signing 30 No 2017 no1FKRL Lease signing outside library Nov 30 2017

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Poems and Song Night Dec 3rd 2017

A starry cast perform their favourite seasonal readings and song.

FKRL 3 person pic 2 July actors night June 2017

Actors: Lucy Cohu; Ben Miles; Tamsin Greig; Haydn Gwynne; Rick Leaf; Emily Raymond; Stephanie Schonfield.

Radio 6 DJ Gideon Coe; Guardian columnist Tim Lott

Singers: Robin Tyson; Janice Kelly.

Plus Allen Samuels.

7.30 pm St Martin’s Church 132 Mortimer Rd NW10 5SN

Bar, refreshments, raffle.

Tickets £12 on the door and at Eventbrite Poems and Song Night Dec 3rd 2017 

All proceeds go towards the refurbishment and running of the library.

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