Boundary Community Launderette

A Not-For-Profit Enterprise Serving the Community Since 1992

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Archive for the ‘Launderette News’ Category

All the latest about us

Temporary Vacancy

Posted by Boundary Community Launderette on 27/07/2021

We have a temporary vacancy at the Boundary Estate Community Launderette, Calvert Ave., E2, for a:

Temporary Launderette Assistant

Saturdays & Sundays, 11.30-2.30

minimum 6 hours per week plus some holiday & sickness cover shifts on weekdays.

Launderette experience isn’t necessary as training will be given, but experience of working with the public would be useful. We pay the Living Wage Foundation rate of £10.85 per hour. This job is initially for 3 months but may be extended.

Please ask the launderette staff for an application form and return it to the launderette by the closing date: Monday 9th August.

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Covid19 Update – July 2021

Posted by Boundary Community Launderette on 06/07/2021

Following the government announcement on Monday 12th July confirming that England will enter step 4 of easing lockdown on Monday 19th we have made the decision to continue operating a drop-off and collect service only, 6 days per week (closing on Wednesdays and Bank Holidays), until further notice to ensure the safety of our customers and staff. We will continue to monitor the situation and will keep you updated here and on our Facebook page.

In line with government advice to businesses we have carried out a risk assessment which shows that we would be failing in our legal duty to our customers and staff if we opened the launderette up to self-service washes with the current increasing cases and new variations of COVID-19. This is because the launderette is a small space within listed 19th century buildings that lack modern ventilation and so gets very hot, this increases with more people inside. With the COVID-19 pandemic continuing and cases projected to reach 100,000 per day within weeks it would be unsafe for us to open the premises to the public. If we did reopen now it could leave our customers and staff at increased risk of coming into contact with an infected person and having to isolate. If any one of our staff did have to isolate it could also mean colleagues that they work with would have to isolate which could mean the launderette closing for at least three days per week, or even every day, during their isolation period, leaving the community without a launderette for some time.

We have made these decisions as although the government announced most legal restrictions will be lifted from 19th July they also said that we have to make our own judgements as to what we believe is safe and sensible to protect ourselves and others. This is confusing and leaves us all open to increased risk, so as a resident-led community business it is our main priority to continue offering everyone a safe and reliable service as we have done since the first lockdown in March 2020. Throughout the lockdowns we have followed government advice sent out to businesses and on the government website, and in making this decision we have once again followed those guidelines, in particular noting that:

  • “There are still cases of COVID-19 in England and there is a risk you could catch or pass on the virus, even if you are fully vaccinated. You are encouraged to exercise caution and consider the risks. While no situation is risk free, there are actions we can take to protect ourselves and others around us.”
  • Employers will still have a legal duty to manage risks to those affected by their business. The way to do this is to carry out a health and safety risk assessment, including the risk of COVID-19, and to take reasonable steps to mitigate the risks you identify. Working Safely guidance sets out a range of mitigations employers should consider”

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Your Community Launderette & Covid19

Posted by Boundary Community Launderette on 10/06/2021

As we’re starting to move slowly from lockdown and working out what the new normal will be we’ve been thinking about how the launderette will operate next, and we want to share that with you whilst letting you know how we’ve managed to stay open this past 15 months. There is still a lot of uncertainty about the next steps out of lockdown and what the government’s announcement next Monday (14th June) might be. At the launderette we have already made some decisions about what we will be doing to continue to protect you and our staff in the immediate future to ensure we’re operating in a way that will ensure we can stay open long into the future and we’ll share those with you in this post. We’re grateful for all of your understanding over the past 15 months and really appreciate your continued support.

What We Did:

As a not-for-profit community business run by and for local residents it was important for us to stay open and provide an essential service throughout the pandemic, and we are proud that with the hard work and support of our great staff we have managed to do this as a small team of voluntary directors, with one of team effectively overseeing things on a daily basis. Like a lot of small businesses we’ve found this past 15 months very difficult – we’ve lost around 60% of our annual income and only received one small government grant in April, (around 12% of our usual income), and furloughed three staff from May until October. We have only been able to stay open because we used reserves we had been saving for premises improvements to cover our costs, and then by taking out a government Covid19 Bounce Back Loan Scheme early in the New Year. During the first lockdown we took the decision to cut back our opening hours due to having far fewer customers, and because of the small size of the launderette we couldn’t have people inside the premises doing their own laundry so we took the decision that if we were to stay open laundry would need to be dropped off, washed by our our staff and collected later. With some minor changes to opening hours/days this is how we’ve continued to work.

During the pandemic three of our brilliant long-serving staff team left – Sabreen and Jasper moved on to new jobs, whilst Maire, who started work with us on the day we first opened in 1992, took the opportunity to retire at the end of March 2021. It hasn’t been possible to organise the send-off they all deserve but we hope to arrange something very special later in the year to mark Maire’s retirement and to thank her, Sabreen and Jasper for being such a great part of the launderette team as well as showing our appreciation to all of our truly brilliant staff team.

What We Will Do Over the Next Few Months:

When the government announces that lockdown has ended we have taken the decision to continue operating as we currently do at least until the end of this year as it will still be necessary to ensure that we keep you and our staff safe whilst Covid19 and its variations continues to affect us all. We have come to this decision after considerable thought as the launderette is too small for people to safely distance – even with just two customers and one member of staff present – and the very nature of the business means it becomes very hot and stuffy very quickly as the design of these historic buildings means we do not have a through-draft of air. As we become busier we will open slightly longer on certain days, and as business improves we will start to employ more staff so that we can start to open earlier in the morning and later in the afternoon, as we used to. As soon as it is clear that allowing customers into the premises to do their own washing as we used to then we’ll let you know. We’ll keep you updated here and on social media We have, however, decided that the launderette will permanently continue to open six days per week, closing on Wednesdays.

The Future:

September 2022 will mark 30 years since launderette opened for business, (planning and fundraising started in 1989 after consultation with residents), and as we intend to stay open for many years to come we will be marking this special anniversary in a number of ways. We had intended to start working towards that anniversary earlier this year with a crowdfunding campaign but, as more restrictions and a further lockdown was announced we decided to wait until times were a little easier for us all. Later in the year we will begin the first of our crowdfunding campaigns to redecorate the premises, restore the frontage (which will allow us to replace the shutters) and possibly replace one or two washing machines as they are all the same age as the launderette! We then hope to continue with crowdfunding to fully replace the remaining machines and dryers, re-plan and refurbish the premises and take the opportunity to provide internet information point, Wi-Fi and a tea and coffee machine, and to raise funds cover the initial employment of a community business manager to develop and increase our services.

Currently the launderette has a team of three paid launderette assistants, Ali, Tina and Mina, all paid the Living Wage Foundation rates, and they are overseen by four voluntary directors who carry out admin, management and fundraising. Jean Locker and Philip Green are two of the remaining original board and have been directors for over thirty years, Anita has been a director for twenty-five years and Tabitha joined the board last year. After their many years of giving up their time and sharing their skills Jean and Anita have decided to step back, currently Philip and Tabitha share the daily management responsibilities but as our future plans develop and a manager is employed the role of the directors will change to a less hands-on role. We will continue to be a not-for-profit community business run for residents with local residents on the board.

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Maintenance – Changes to Service

Posted by Boundary Community Launderette on 10/06/2021

Dear Customers

Next Thursday morning, 17th June, the dryers will be having their 6-monthly duct clean as required for health and safety reasons – as well as making sure they stay toasty hot to dry your clothes! This means that whilst we’ll be open for you to leave or collect laundry it may not be possible to complete your washing on the same day so you may have to collect it on Friday. Also, it will not be possible to leave your washing for drying only next Thursday.

We’re sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.

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We’re OPEN during lockdown!

Posted by Boundary Community Launderette on 05/01/2021

MONDAY, TUESDAY, THURSDAY & FRIDAY – 9.30am-4.30pm

SATURDAY & SUNDAY – 9.00am-5.00pm

Please leave your laundry with the launderette staff who will wash it on your behalf for collection later. There are currently no service charges for personal/domestic laundry, but service charges do apply to all business laundry.  Laundry left after 2pm might not be ready for collection until the next working day, and laundry can be collected up until closing time.

Covid19 Requirements:

We are Covid19 safe. Our staff ensure that all laundry is kept separate and all machines are cleaned between washes.

To stay within the government’s safe distancing  rules we are currently unable to allow customers into the launderette to do their own laundry or to wait inside it’s being washed. Please wear a mask  when dropping off and collecting your laundry, (unless medically exempt), and please remain in the striped floor area.

Thank you for your continuing patience and support for our community business, we’ll keep you posted about any last minute changes here; you can also subscribe (see button on the left column) to receive updates and stay up-to-date with any changes and hear our news, and you can follow us on facebook, and we’re now on Instagram.

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