What makes our community unique?

2020 Brent Year of Culture

In the library on  Sat Nov 3rd  2018 we discussed our contribution to the 2020 Brent Year of Culture. 

The Community shared their thoughts as to what makes the neighbourhood unique. What is our sense of ourselves and place? What is our history? Where do we come from?

How do we express that and how do we record it?

Entertainment was provided by local talent, including children from Trinity Performing Arts, Molly Moody (Queens Park Singers), Jon Scott (jazz and blues singer), Dimitri Van Zwanenberg (violinist)  and others.

Refreshments provided by the wonderful volunteers of Kensal Rise Library.

Photos: Audience, Violinist and Harpists, Allen Samuels

FKRL Culture 2020 audience Nov 2018

FKRL Trinity dance Nov 3 2018 group

FKRL 2 F violinists Nov 3 2018 croppedFKRL Violin at 2020 Culture Nov 2018 croppedFKRL Molly Moody Nov 3 2018FKRL Jon Scott Nov 2018


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Brent 2020 Year of Culture

2pm Saturday November 3 in the library.

As part of the Brent 2020 Year of Culture, we will be discussing ways to celebrate the library and the community with funds provided by the London Mayor.

Join in the discussion about how we should record and express our story.

Everyone welcome!

There will be music, refreshments and a book sale.

FKRL 2020 Culture Oct 2018

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When Will Kensal Rise Library Open?

FKRL Library door Sep 2018 A SamuelsIt’s what everyone’s been asking.
Simple question. Slightly more complicated answer.

The beautifully refurbished space has been open since May, in fact, for venue hire (parties, workshops), community activities such as Kensal Green Councillors’ monthly surgeries and residents’ association meetings (next Kensal Green RA meeting is Tuesday October 30th) – and of course,the Friends of Kensal Rise Library’s fabulous fundraising events like our Indoor Markets, Actors’ Nights, Trend Forecasting Fashion Events, Wine-Tasting etc.

It gets more complicated trying to estimate when the lending library will be fully operational and open at regular hours. At the moment, the closest we can come to a realistic answer is: ‘before Christmas’.

Here’s why:

1. We have found damp under the floor, particularly in the smaller space (the meeting and teaching room). We are monitoring this, have replaced our lovingly restored parquet with a temporary floor, and are in discussions with the developer/landlord, Uplift.

2. A few snagging issues left over from the Phase 1 refurbishment  still need sorting. We are in talks with the builder.

3. Shelves that have been delivered need to be altered and we are in discussions with the supplier and our architect.

4. We are hoping very soon to build the children’s library and the reception/retail areas in the larger space. To help fund this build and open the library sooner, please, please donate via this link: https://mydonate.bt.com/charities/friendsofkensalriselibrary

Other news

Following interviews, the trustees have appointed a Library Manager. As well as the above issues, the Library Manager is also handling administrative matters and fundraising.

Diary Date: Saturday November 3rd at 2pm Year of Culture Public Engagement. Come to the library! Along with all other Brent libraries,  we are to receive £10,000 to create a lasting piece of art celebrating the library and the stories of the community surrounding it. This is part of the Year of Culture 2020, which the London Mayor has awarded Brent Council. We have exciting ideas for this – you may have your own. Please come to the library to hear all about it, tell us your thoughts and register your interest in getting involved. Other attractions include  a book sale, entertainment and free refreshments.

…So there’s been plenty of stuff to deal with.  Meanwhile, thank you very much for your patience and continuing support.

Stephanie Schonfield

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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:  https://bit.ly/2u7PzPY 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 fkrlrecruitment@gmail.com


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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 Tuesday 3rd July 7pm in the library.
Futurist and designer, Geraldine Wharry, who has lectured at the British Library and universities worldwide, will give a presentation and panel discussion covering science and technology as well as the arts, and how they influence fashion. Also tips on how to get a career in trend forecasting.
FKRL Fashion event Jun 2018

Geraldine is very generously donating the evening’s proceeds to Kensal Rise Community Library. 


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Novelist and wine consultant, Peter Stafford-Bow, reads from his cult novel Corkscrew – as simultaneously, wine merchant extraordinaire, Berkmann’s Alex Canneti, curates and hosts a wine-tasting to go with the reading.
Listen as you taste.
Audience Q&A, sober or not.

Advance £10 Tickets available NOW from Queens Park Books, Salusbury Rd,  and CD Food & Wine opposite library.

FKRL thumbnail_best final wine poster jpg May 2018

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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:https://mydonate.bt.com/events/kensalriselibrary/457218
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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