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Before you get started

Spacehive is the UK’s only dedicated crowdfunding platform designed for projects that bring places to life, be that sprucing up a local park, holding a community event, or repurposing a disused building.

We aim to revolutionise the way communities grow, first by giving local people the tools to put forward the ideas they want to see happen in their area. In addition to providing a platform for their idea to shine, we prompt project creators to consider the practical requirements for setting up and delivering a community project, from planning permission to fully-costed budgeting.

Adding extra credibility and robustness to our approach is our verification process. Prior to starting a crowdfunding campaign, all projects are verified by our partners at Locality. This process carries out the necessary checks to ensure that if funded, the project can actually be delivered.

Finally, Spacehive is a trusted place for collaboration, bringing together communities, residents, businesses, councils, and grant bodies. Through our grant maker app we are able to automatically match projects to Funds, which can then pledge directly to the crowdfunding campaign – no more laborious grant forms!

It’s a fast, transparent and fun way to transform where you live: just find a project you love using our map tool or find a Movement in your area and pledge a contribution to a live campaign, or start a project of your own. Payments are only charged if projects hit their funding targets, so you only pay if the project goes ahead!

Who’s behind Spacehive

We are an independent company based in London that launched in 2012. We love what we do and who we do it with, and we reinvest all of our profit in making Spacehive better.

If you like what we do, say hello, check us out on Facebook or Twitter or check out our job listings!

Spacehive is all about transforming spaces and places!

A project on Spacehive must clearly show how it could impact a space for the benefit of the community. This can be something that directly improves an area, such as painting a street mural or repurposing a disused building, something that can lead onto neighbourhood improvement, such as a feasibility study or planning consultation, or something temporary that brings people together such as organising a festival or event. The project can be either permanent or temporary, and funding can be sought for both revenue and capital costs. Please consider the following:

  • Projects cannot be solely to fund courses, classes, or ongoing work.
  • Projects cannot be solely for charitable fundraising.
  • Projects must be in the UK.
  • Projects can be led by any type of organisation or individual.

Still unsure if your idea is one for Spacehive?

If you can answer yes to these questions then your idea is probably eligible for Spacehive.

  • Does my idea transform a shared, or publicly accessible space in the UK, either temporarily or permanently?
  • Is my project something tangible; will backers be able to see what happens as a result of their backing? (e.g. a new play area for the park, as opposed to the salary of a park manager).
  • Would my project benefit my local area and bring people together?

Upload the basic shell of your idea and send a link to info@spacehive.com.  We’ll look over it and offer advice on how best to proceed.


If you’re an individual, community group, school, company, or council, you can create a project on Spacehive, as long as the project idea itself is eligible. You can check our eligibility criteria here. When you sign up to Spacehive, you are asked what type of account you would like. It is worth noting that some Funds will only back projects which are run by organisations, so if you want to be matched to Funds then consider creating an organisation account (if you have an organisation which can back you up).

Spacehive fees

Anyone can start using Spacehive and create a project for free. However in order to ensure the continuing development and maintenance of our technology platform, the process of verifying projects, and the support that we provide, we apply a success fee to projects which hit their target with us. 

Our success fee is a flat 5% (+1% VAT) on the total cost of your crowdfunding campaign. This fee is automatically calculated and added to your total when you input your project costs, and is visible in the budget section of your page so that this is transparent to all. 

As an example, if you input project costs and it totals £100, a £5 fee and £1 VAT will be automatically added, giving a total of £106.

The success fee continues to apply to funds raised during overfunding.

Transaction fees

In order to collect pledges, payment providers will also charge a small transaction fee (yes, every time you pay by card in a shop, the business pays this fee!).

PayPal charges 3.4% + 20p per pledge and GoCardless 0.5%. These are estimated at the beginning of your campaign and are automatically added onto your total project costs. Because these are estimations you might notice your campaign target fluctuating depending on the payment methods used by backers and the pledge sizes. Generally the transaction fees are overestimated so you’ll probably see your target decreasing over the duration of your campaign, especially if you get a big pledge or if you mostly receive GoCardless pledges.

As an example: £100 (project costs) + £6 (Spacehive fees + VAT) + £~2 (transaction fees) = £108 (total amount to raise)

Spacehive and transaction fees are shown in the Costs tab of project pages.

Spacehive operates an allornothing model, which means that if you don’t hit your target, none of the pledges are collected. This can seem daunting at first, however we believe that it is to the advantage of project creators.

  • It helps you raise more money than possible due to the sense of urgency it creates.
  • It’s less risk for everyone. If you need £5,000, it’s not much good having £1,000 and crowd of people expecting you to complete a £5,000 project.
  • It’s easier to make backers part with their money. They will only be charged if you hit your target and proceed to deliver your project.
  • It works. 56% of Spacehive projects are successful, which is much higher than the crowdfunding industry standard.

Once the initial funding target has been reached, projects can continue to raise additional funds to make the project even bigger and better in overfunding. If the project has overfunding enabled, details of how the extra funds will be spent are explained on the project page and backers can choose whether to keep pledging towards those cost items too. Find out more about overfunding here.

Spacehive is open to anyone looking to create something amazing within their community but we do have a few guidelines all project makers must follow.

Number 1. Everything on Spacehive must be a project.

A project is something with a clear end, like building a playground, planting a tree, or putting on a festival. A project will eventually be completed, and something tangible will be produced as a result. Success.

Number 2. Projects must be civic.

Projects must have a civic value, meaning the benefit should be felt in the places we share, rather than our private homes and offices. Projects can be permanent (like a new playground) or temporary (like an event) and they can include revenue as well as capital costs.

Number 3. It doesn’t matter who you are.

Creating projects is open to any organisation or person over the age of 18 and based in the UK. If you’re an organisation it doesn’t matter what your legal structure is – for example whether you’re a charity or a for-profit business. Everybody is welcome to get involved.

Are those the only guidelines?

Those are the main three, but below is a list of specific uses of Spacehive that are not allowed.

What is not allowed?

  • Spacehive cannot be used to raise money for causes, whether it’s a charity run for Oxfam or a fundraiser for the work of a local conservation group. Other sites will be better suited to fundraising for these causes.
  • Projects cannot offer equity or financial incentives (share of profits, ownership, the repayment of loans or cash-value equivalents).
  • No offensive projects (e.g. murals with racist content) or projects that promote political or religious ideologies. And keep it clean folks. You know who you are.
  • Projects cannot offer rewards that offer entry to raffles, lotteries, or participation in gambling. That includes Vegas style blackjack to the Village tombola.
  • No projects outside the UK. Yet.


You can change your name in your Settings > Your Account.

If you’ve agreed to be the Project Delivery Manager of a project you won’t be able to edit your name. Please contact support@spacehive.com for help with this.

Email address

You can change your email address in your Settings > Your Account.


You can change your password in your Settings > Your Account.


You can edit your biography by going to your Profile from the drop down menu in the top right of your screen.

Profile Image

You can edit profile image by going to your Profile from the drop down menu in the top right of your screen, then clicking on the circle photo space.

My Account (1)

You can request for your account to be deleted in your account settings, by clicking Delete Account as in the screenshot below.

Spacehive will then check if your account for deletion, and if so remove all data immediately. Your account may not be able to be deleted automatically if you have a project that is either fundraising or successful, or you have backed a project that is currently fundraising. If your account falls in to one of these categories, please email info@spacehive.com with a request to delete your account.

Delete account(1)

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Getting started on Spacehive

After checking your idea is eligible for Spacehive, you can begin to create your project.

Our project creation tool is a series of steps which asks you to complete information varying from the project’s name, location, costings, and background. You can save each step as you go and return to add more, or make edits, at any point up to submitting your idea for verification, after which your page becomes locked. What’s verification?

To find out more on what you’ll need to enter and how to create a great looking project, check out our Ultimate Guide to Crowdfunding.

What is the common thread that runs through all successful Spacehive campaigns? In our opinion it’s that the project creators took the time to plan their project and make it appear as best as possible on the page, before then planning the launch of their crowdfunding campaign.

We really can’t emphasise this enough: if you prepare well and take a proactive approach to the crowdfunding campaign, your chance of success is exponentially higher. Here are some of the main things that we recommend you consider:

Research your budget

How much money do you need? Are you raising the full budget or a portion of it? Do you have a suitable contingency? Avoid later headaches by doing your research, and be as transparent and as accurate as you can. Supporters will appreciate it.

Gain permission to deliver your project

The majority of our projects take place in shared spaces that require permission from the landowner, or even local authority. If this is relevant to your project, then consider who owns the land, and who will maintain it once delivered, to see if additional permissions will be required.

Map out your networks

Spacehive is not a magical source of money. Funding comes from a variety of sources – your friends and colleagues, your broader social or business networks, and, if your project does well, people in your area will start to notice it. It’s up to you to build that momentum for your project and ensure that the word spreads – it won’t happen automatically. Start mapping your crowd and get an idea of where backers are likely to come from, and how much money you think you can raise from them.

Choose the right fundraising goal

Once you’ve researched your budget and considered your reach, you’re ready to set your funding goal. Because funding is all-or-nothing, you’ll only collect what you raise if you hit your target, so make sure it feels realistic. Think about out how much money you need to complete your project as promised (while considering how much funding you think you can realistically generate), and select an amount close to that. Remember that you can add any additional items that would make your core project even bigger and better to either your Wish List, for in kind contributions, or as Overfunding targets.

What’s Overfunding? What’s a Wish List?

Set an appropriate campaign length

Funding can last anywhere from one to 365 days, however a longer duration is not necessarily better.

Short projects that prepare well for their campaign, and push hard during it, tend to do better because they create a sense of excitement and urgency. Longer projects tend to encourage procrastination and lose momentum.

It’s up to you to find that sweet spot; short enough to maintain interest and fill with activities and communications, long enough to give you the time you need to crowdfund.

The majority of projects on Spacehive are created by organisations who have either formed to create a specific project, or an existing organisation that has recognised crowdfunding as a way to raise funds for a new project.

Individuals run a lot of great projects too though, and a lot of our biggest and best campaigns have been organised and delivered by one person. Once the campaign’s off and running you’ll often find people want to add support with more than their money as well, and can help form a team around you.

If you are planning a campaign as an individual, it’s a great exercise to map out where your current strengths in fundraising are, and where you could benefit from some added support. Have you got a good social media network and decent marketing ability for example, or could someone really add a lot to your campaign by supporting you with that? If you could use some extra help the first thing to do is to approach like minded people and friends and family, your core crowdfunding supporters, to see if they can lend a hand. And remember that Spacehive are always here to help as well, starting with our ultimate guide to crowdfunding all the way through to bespoke support helping you unlock cash from the business and funding community. Drop us a line at support@spacehive.com throughout your campaign if there’s anything we can help with.

If an organisation you’re a member of is running and will be delivering the project you’re creating, please make sure you register the account as an organisation when signing up. This is important as some Funds will only pledge to projects run by organisations. If you register the account as an individual when you’re acting on behalf of your organisation, you may not be matched to Funds and therefore miss out on the opportunity to pitch to them.

If you’re unclear about the type of account you should create, you can consider which bank account will be accepting pledges and paying to deliver the project. If it’s a personal bank account then you’re probably running the project as an individual, if it’s a company bank account you should probably register as an organisation.

If you’re unsure about which account type to create, please get in touch at support@spacehive.com.

Yes. If you’ve created an account as an individual you can add the details of the organisation you’re a member of later, and act on their behalf.

To do this simply go to your profile settings – spacehive.com/MyAccount/ – and select Register an organisation at the bottom of the page. Once you’ve added a few details about your organisation, your public profile and any projects created will appear under the organisation name and logo rather than your own.

To get the project page and campaign up and running you just need an image for your project, not a video. A video can be added to your project at any point during the set up or running of your campaign.

If you haven’t already got a video, you should think about creating one as a video is by far the best way to get a feel for the emotions, motivations, and character of a project. Crowdfunding projects that have videos are generally 20-30% more likely to succeed than those without.

Some videos are professionally made, but most videos are just someone telling their story straight into the camera. You can spend days shooting and editing, or you can just knock it out with a couple friends on a Saturday. It doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be you.

No matter how creative or rough-and-ready your video, make sure you:

  • Tell us who you are.
  • Tell us the story behind your project. Where’d you get the idea? What stage is it at? How are you feeling about it?
  • Talk about the benefits your project will bring.
  • Clearly and openly ask for people’s support, explaining what the funding is for.
  • Explain that if you don’t reach your goal, you’ll get nothing, and everyone will be sad.
  • Thank everyone!

Finally, make sure your video is 100MB or less, formatted in MP4.

Top tip: If you’re shooting your video on your mobile phone, hold it horizontally so you get a nice wide shape instead of a tall skinny one.

Head to the Save Madeira Terrace project page to check out the amazing video they used for their campaign.

Spacehive is a donations based platform where Backers pledge money to improve their local area. Having the spaces people care most about improved by renovating a playground, creating a community hub, or saving a historic building, is the reward of the crowdfunding campaign.

Because of this, Spacehive doesn’t ask Project Creators to offer additional rewards as an incentive to back a project, asking instead to focus on the core project they want to deliver.

If a rewards system could help engage a community around a project idea you have, please get in touch at info@spacehive.com to discuss the best way of displaying them.


Projects created by charities or CASCs can set up an automatic email to Backers, asking if they’d like to claim Gift Aid on their pledge. The email requests the Backer to provide the information needed to claim GiftAid, which is a postcode and confirmation statement (confirming they’ve paid more in income tax than the value of their pledge).

You will then need to collate their details using the spreadsheet template and make your claim online.

Because donations on Spacehive are conditional (only taken from backers if the project reaches its target) you cannot make the claim until the project has hit its crowdfunding target, meaning Gift Aid donations you collect will not count towards your crowdfunding target. Claims made via Charities Online are normally paid within 20 working days of HMRC receiving the claim.

Please email support@spacehive.com if you’d like the automatic Gift Aid emails set up for your project.

The total cost of your project will be calculated based on the items that you include in the costs section on your Spacehive page. In this section you can list the individual items that make up your project, and provide a cost for each one. It is important to be as accurate as possible – try not to round up or approximate. The better researched your budget is, the more confidence you will inspire from your potential backers that you know what you are doing (remember that your budget is visible on your Spacehive page).

During the verification process, you will be asked to provide evidence of how you arrived at these costs. Failure to do so can result in the verification process taking a lot longer than usual, and may result in your project not getting verified. We recommend that you upload any supporting evidence before you submit the project for verification

If you are purchasing an item, you should do your research into how much it will cost and include that figure. If you are getting work done by a contractor, then call them up and ask for a quote. For work costing more than £5k, aim to get 3 quotes. If you do need to estimate costs, talk to people who have run similar projects (or check out the Spacehive project archive) to make sure that you are in the right ballpark. You are able to upload quotes and evidence backing up your costs. These will not be visible to the wider public but will be available for the Spacehive team and the verification team at Locality to review.

There is also the opportunity when filling in your costs page to add in-kind contributions that you have already secured, as well as any funds that you have raised which are for this project. See our separate FAQ on this.


If you’ve already begun fundraising for your project before coming to Spacehive, you can show any funds raised or items received as pledges on your project page, provided that they are for the same project. Showing that you have already raised funds will help get your campaign off to a good start, as it demonstrates that there’s support for the project and this will encourage others to get behind you.

You can add funds already raised in the costs section of your project page, along with in-kind contributions, and attribute them to a backer who will then show up on your backer list.

In-kind cost items will show as both a cost to the project and a donation – as it’s a good already received – whereas funds raised will show as a pledge towards the project.

We have a table to help explain the difference between costs, pre-campaign fundraising, and in-kind contributions.

Anything raised and added to the project before the campaign begins is not subject to Spacehive’s 5% success fee.

To ensure transparency, once you’ve begun fundraising you cannot swap out cost items for additional in-kind donations. You must raise the full target amount that you agreed upon and which Locality verified at the start of the campaign, and all donations must be processed via Spacehive. This means that if you raise funds outside of Spacehive during the campaign (e.g. cash collected at an event), and want these reflected on your Spacehive page, you will need to find a way to have these funds pledged via the platform. For more information please see our dedicated FAQ on adding funds raised offline once a campaign has started.

Once the first 5 steps of creating your project have been completed, you’ll have enough information to share a project page. No information is locked at this stage and you can continue making edits up to submitting for verification (what is verification?). Publishing a project page allows you to share a link with friends or other members of your organisation to get some feedback on the page, whilst still editable.

By default the page will remain hidden and you can toggle the visibility of the page between being public and hidden by clicking the ‘Project is publicly’ switch in your project dashboard.

Having a live page doesn’t allow people to make pledges yet, you must be verified before being able to start fundraising.

VAT is charged by UK companies providing goods and services that are VAT registered. The current rate of VAT in the UK is 20%. When creating your Project please consider any VAT you will be charged within your project cost lines with the costs section. To ensure your crowdfunding target is accurate please use the total including VAT checking with your suppliers if VAT will be payable if required.

There are 9 steps to creating a project, each containing different pieces of information relevant to your project. Some of these steps are shared with the crowd so they have all information needed in order to understand your project idea and make a pledge, and other pieces of information are shared with our verification partner, Locality, to help them assess the viability of your project idea, and make sure it can be delivered.

The public pieces of information, and it’s important to share them, are:

  • Project description – So Backers can read about your project and understand your idea.
  • Images and video – An opportunity to shows the faces behind the project and what the final project might look like.
  • Location – So everyone knows where it’s going to happen.
  • Milestones – Outlines the timeline of delivering the project once the funds are raised.
  • Cost items – Everyone can see how much the project will cost and where the money will be spent.

Information that is used for verification and Fund assessment only:

  • Permissions to deliver the project from the landowner and where needed the Local Authority
  • The details of the contractors who will be working to deliver the project
  • Expected social impact the project will create once delivered
  • Any additional information requested by Funds whilst making an application.

Visit some of our live project pages to get a feel of how your campaign will look once publicly visible.

Spacehive projects can use PayPal and/or GoCardless to collect pledges. PayPal allows backers to pledge directly from their PayPal account, whereas GoCardless is a direct debit system that allows people to make payments directly from their bank account, via a one-off direct debit. The direct debit is set up when Backers pledge, allowing Spacehive to collect the funds from their bank account at the end of the campaign, should you reach your funding goal. Because it’s a one-off direct debit, only one payment can ever be taken as a result of this pledge.

For project creators, we recommend adding both options as it gives potential backers more choice, and each platform has different benefits. PayPal allows Backers to pay from anywhere in the world, while GoCardless has lower transaction fees for UK-based pledges.

For more information on setting up a GoCardless account visit our guide, here, and the table below has more information on both platforms.

PayPal GoCardless
Transaction fee 3.4% 0.5%
Payment types supported PayPal account, credit & debit cards BACS and debit cards
Maximum pledge size £1,250 £10,000
Payments can be made from Anywhere in the world UK-only
Funds deposited in Your PayPal account Your bank account

Overfunding is a feature that allows you to continue collecting pledges if you hit your funding target before your campaign period ends. Projects that overfund can continue fundraising for an extra month beyond their original campaign end date.

There is no limit to how much extra money you can raise when you are overfunding – but you do have to explain how you will use it. You can stop overfunding and end your campaign whenever you want.

Overfunding can be useful if you have a core project that you need to raise money for but can also see ways to add to it, if your campaign proves popular.

Great, how do I do this?

You can enable overfunding within the costs section of your project dashboard. We’ll ask you to list the things that you’d spend the extra money on. This will be displayed on your project page.

You can only enable overfunding before your project is verified.

What sort of costs should I overfund for?

Overfunding should be used to raise funds for added extras – things that would make your project even better, rather than things that are essential to getting the core project delivered.

If you do decide to use overfunding, be careful not to mislead your backers by telling them that your core project includes things you can only deliver if you overfund.

If you can’t find what you need in our FAQs please email info@spacehive.com for general enquiries, or if you have a project then email support@spacehive.com, including your project name in the subject line.

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Pitching to Funds

Spacehive partners with Local Authorities, companies and funding bodies across the UK who are like-minded in their support of local projects, and want to help the community to fund them. As part of these partnerships, they set up a ‘Fund’ on Spacehive from which they can pledge directly to campaigns.

Projects are matched to Funds once they have entered basic details including the type of project, its impact area, the type of organisation behind it, and location.

Once matched, the project creator can then review each one and can apply or ‘pitch’ to it directly through Spacehive. Each Fund may ask unique questions, or request that certain evidence or documentation is provided (e.g. a copy of your constitution or most recent set of accounts).

To view the full list of Funds your project could be matched to, have a look at our Fund directory.

There is no guarantee of any Fund pledging towards a particular project, they make their decisions on the same basis as the rest of the crowd: how much they like your project idea, and how much support it has from the community. If a Fund likes the idea and you can show that the community do too through some smaller but equally important pledges, the Fund may well make a pledge.

Should the Fund do so, the pledge will be added to your campaign in the same way as any other pledge from the crowd, and will help you reach your overall funding goal. There’s no set amount that the Fund will pledge, it can be any amount up to their maximum pledge per project which is outlined on the Fund overview page during pitching, or on the Partners profile page.

Visit the Fund directory for more information on Funds.

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Before a project can start crowdfunding it must be verified by Locality. This involves reviewing the project to make sure it’s viable and trustworthy. Spacehive is the only crowdfunding platform to provide a verification process for projects before they start crowdfunding.

Why verify projects?

The verification process is designed to give confidence to both the project creator and potential backers (including big funders) that the project has had its viability considered, with the end result being that all parties are confident that the project can be delivered should the funds be secured.

What do I need in order to get verified?

The verification process takes on average 2-5 days. This can be dependent on the size of a project; more complex or larger ones may by their nature require more time to look over the budget and permissions. It can also be dependent on how well prepared you are. Projects that submit for verification having done everything required to satisfy Locality in advance will be verified a lot quicker than those which have not done so. Getting caught into a back and forth with Locality as they request missing information can slow down the verification process by days.

Before you submit for verification, make sure that you have:

  • Proof of permission (e.g. event license, council agreement, landowner consent)
  • Evidence of costs (e.g. building work quotations, links to online shop listings, proof of in-kind/offline funds)
  • Relevant insurances, policies, or qualifications (e.g. organisation constitution, safeguarding policy, certifications)
  • Evidence of any funds that you have received for this project that you would like to have shown on your campaign (e.g. grant agreement, scan of a cheque, bank statement).

Getting verified

Before you can submit your project for verification you must fill in all the project details in your project dashboard. You’ll know when you’ve filled in all required fields because a button will appear asking you to submit for verification.

After submitting the project for verification you will not be able to edit your project page, except adding new images and videos. This is so that Locality can verify your project as you have declared it. You should therefore only submit for verification when you are content that you have done everything required and that your project is in its final shape.

For more information on what you should do while you are in verification, read our dedicated FAQ on this.

Once you are verified you need to set your campaign end date. Check out these tips on how long to run your campaign for.

If you have raised funds for this project already, you are able to show this on your Spacehive page. For example, your project costs £100,000 total, and you received a grant of £50,000, and are trying to crowdfund the remaining £50,000. You can set up your Spacehive page so that the project is shown to cost £100,000, and you already have your first backer. Your campaign will therefore start on £50,000, with another £50,000 to raise.

In order for this to happen, we require evidence that these funds are in place and that they are for this project specifically. This evidence will then be checked by our partners Locality during the verification process. The more evidence you provide, the quicker and more likely it is that your project will be verified. Examples of evidence that you should have ready include:

  • Letter/email of grant agreement
  • Bank statement
  • Scan of cheque

Please note that you can only upload these funds prior to starting your campaign. Once your campaign is live, all donations will need to be pledged via the Spacehive platform using the payment provider(s) you have set up.

Related FAQ: How can I show money or items I’ve already received before crowdfunding?

When creating your project, one of the most important sections to fill out is your costs section. To help us verify that your project is realistically costed, you will be required to upload some evidence along with each of your cost items to show that it is available to you to the value that you have listed.

What types of evidence are accepted?

  • The most common forms of evidence come in the shape of a quote from a supplier. This could be an emailed pdf, a screenshot of an email or a scan of a hard copy of the quote.
  • If you’re buying products online, you could include a screenshot of an online store selling the product, clearly showing the price. It’s best if you attach a pdf or image file.
  • Invoices are also accepted – but only if they haven’t yet been paid! Retrospective crowdfunding isn’t allowed on Spacehive.

What types of evidence aren’t accepted?

  • Please don’t upload a spreadsheet or budget document that you or your team has put together. If you’ve entered the cost details yourself, that doesn’t prove anything to us!
  • Outdated quotes. If your quote is from a long time ago but you are sure it’s still valid, please provide further evidence to support this.

We do appreciate that in some circumstances, exact costs and supporting evidence is unattainable, so please use the text boxes provided to explain your situation and this will be taken into consideration during the verification process.

Please note that any supporting evidence you upload will be for internal use only and won’t be visible on your page.

For advice on what cost items to include in your Costs section, check out our FAQ on creating your budget.

Not sure what verification is?

From the moment you submit your project for verification, to the moment your project is delivered, you won’t be able to edit your project page (e.g. the description, costs, or payment details).

This is because your project, as it is packaged up for verification, is the idea that gets reviewed by Locality, our verification partners. Being able to edit your project post-verification would render the verification process futile.

You can however add or remove photos, post updates, and edit your profile information.

If there are any other changes (e.g. typos or event date changes) please email support@spacehive.com and we’ll endeavour to fix these for you.

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Project creators can choose how long to run their campaign for once the project has been verified, and they are ready to launch. While the maximum duration for a campaign is 365 days, generally we do not recommend this. Rather you should try and settle on a duration that gives you enough time to raise your funding target, while also being short enough to maintain a high energy campaign. Remember, most people will pledge to your project at the beginning when you are actively promoting it, and then at the end when our all-or-nothing model creates a sense of urgency. Having a long period in the middle can lead to inaction and a loss of crucial momentum.

The following provides a general guide as to how long you might want to run your campaign for:

  • Up to £5,000 = four weeks
  • Up to £15,000 = eight weeks
  • Up to £50,000 = twelve weeks
  • Up to £1,000,000 = six months

Running a shorter campaign sets a tone of confidence, excitement and urgency, which motivates people to get behind you. It can be hard to maintain interest and momentum over long drawn-out campaigns. Short campaigns do require pre-planning, including things like warming up your backers and drawing up a campaign timeline. The more work you put in beforehand, the easier time you’ll have throughout the campaign!

If you have a preferred date to launch, please take into consideration that verification typically takes 1-7 days depending on the complexity of the project. To speed up the verification process, make sure to have proof of quotations and permissions ready to present if need be.

Similarly, if you need the funds by a certain date, please bear in mind that it can take up to two weeks for the funds to come through after hitting your target. Unverified PayPal and GoCardless accounts are the main cause for delays, so please make sure your payment accounts are verified by the time you hit your target.

Spacehive is an online crowdfunding platform and therefore all donations that are made to your project should be done so via the ‘back this project’ button on your project page. Backers will then be presented with the option of using whichever of Spacehive’s payment partners you have selected (GoCardless and PayPal).

If you expect to receive cash, cheques or bank transfers from funders during your crowdfunding campaign and want to have this loaded into your fundraising total, you will need to pledge this using the Spacehive platform as outlined above. Spacehive does not facilitate pledging these funds based on good faith that you hold this money. We recommend one of the following options:

  1. Encourage your backer to pledge via Spacehive. Talk with whoever is offering you funds this way and encourage them to make this donation via Spacehive. We understand that some funders may be reluctant to deviate from their standard methods of payment. To help you explain the benefits of using our platform, we have an email template that you can use to ask someone to pledge to your campaign via Spacehive.
  2. Create a dedicated separate bank account for funds you raise offline, from which you can then pledge to your campaign. When you set up your bank account with Spacehive, this is the account into which you will receive funds if you hit your target. If you want to pledge to your own campaign using funds you have raised offline, then you must do so from another bank account. This is in order to comply with anti-money laundering regulations. If you don’t have access to a second bank account, we recommend that you create a dedicated bank account into which you can deposit cash and funding you receive outside of Spacehive (MoneySuperMarket has advice on the best current providers). Please note that in the event of you not hitting your campaign target, Spacehive does not take responsibility for refunding anyone who has given you money outside of the Spacehive platform.

In-kind contributions can be made prior to the start of a crowdfunding campaign. That way our verification partners Locality can review these contributions to make sure that they are fully secured and will not risk the project going ahead should you reach your target.

Because of the importance of verifying in-kind contributions, they cannot be accepted after the point of verification has passed and the campaign is live. While is it possible that through hearing about your project, someone may be willing to come forward with an offer for an item that is in your cost items, we are unable to determine whether that offer will be 100% guaranteed in the event of you hitting your target. We are also unable to determine whether the offer made matches the standard and description of the item that you have in your project budget.

If the item offered is from your wish list, and not from your main cost items, then you are welcome to accept this at any time.

Regular communication with supporters who have backed your campaign helps to build trust and keep people engaged. It can also be a way to crowdsource ideas and make new appeals for your campaign. There are many ways you can communicate with your backers:

  • Spacehive Update Tool; sends an email to your crowd and posts an update on the project page. Try to send an update every week or two with an image and maybe some social media post templates for them to copy, paste, and post. We strongly recommend regular use of the Update Tool. In addition to the positive impact of communication with your backers, your project page will look more interesting to new prospective backers as every update appears on the right hand side in your ‘journey’.
  • Social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.); use post scheduling tools Buffer/Hootsuite to ensure a steady stream of posts, and Canva to make interesting accompanying graphics. Consider posting short 10-sec videos of your backers explaining why they’re supporting the project.
  • Newsletters; use your own mailing lists to promote your campaign far and wide! Know someone who runs a local newsletter? Ask them if they would be willing to include news about your project in their next mailout, and be prepared to send them a short piece of text and an image with a link to your Spacehive page.
  • Events; re-spark your audience’s excitement with wine and pizza at a 50% event. Getting everyone together in one room is very powerful and will catalyse another wave of pledges. It’s also an opportunity to invite along prospective backers, including local businesses who may feel more confident about the project when they meet you and your backers in the flesh.
  • Leaflets and posters; bright and colourful, help them to imagine what they’ll get if the campaign succeeds. Don’t forget to use your project link/URL!

During your crowdfunding campaign there are a few things you can do in order to garner support from those who may not come across your project online.

Organising an event is a great way to engage your community and reach new prospective backers, driving support for your project.

Once your event is planned and you’ve set a date be sure to let your backers know by posting it on your project page. To do this, just log into your Spacehive account and go to your project dashboard. On the left hand side underneath ‘Posts’, you’ll see ‘Events’. Click the yellow button that says ‘Add Event’ and you’ll be given the chance to add details such as the location and start time, as well as an eye catching image.

Save Madeira Terrace edit 2

You can also post press pieces on your project page, click here to learn how.

Your crowdfunding target fluctuates according to the transaction fees (PayPal transaction fees are 3.4% + 20p per pledge, whereas GoCardless charge a flat 0.5%).

Spacehive estimates your total transaction fees at the start of the campaign and add this onto the funding target. Spacehive over-estimates the fees so you’re likely to see the fees come down throughout your campaign, especially if you’re getting more pledges through GoCardless than PayPal, or if you have a series of large pledges.

The Wish List is similar to overfunding as it’s designed to make your core project even bigger and better, but instead of asking people to pledge money like in overfunding, it gives them the option to donate items instead. You can add items to your Wish List at any point during your campaign.

The public can then view the Wish List on your project page and either offer anything you’ve requested, or offer anything else similar that they think could help. Should you then choose to accept the offer, at which point it will appear on your project page as being received.

Old Kent Road studios

Spacehive uses two external payment providers to accept and collect pledges to each campaign, PayPal and GoCardless. You can set up and add either account to start fundraising, but the accounts must be verified by the end of your campaign in order for you to receive the pledges. PayPal/GoCardless ask that you verify your payment accounts to comply with anti-money laundering laws.

The steps below briefly outline the process of creating and verifying a GoCardless account. Please read Spacehive’s guide on creating a GoCardless account here to see the process in full. 

Verifying your GoCardless account

Log in to GoCardless via their website.

Once logged in, click on ‘Settings’ in the top right corner. Click on ‘Company Info’. You should see a list of criteria, some might have green ticks by them.
To verify your GoCardless account click on ‘Company Details’ and fill in all the required fields.

Once your account is successfully verified a green tick will appear by ‘Company Details’.

If you need any help verifying your account then get in touch with GoCardless.

Verifying your PayPal account

To start the verification process log in to PayPal and click the ‘Add bank account’ option in the dashboard. PayPal will then make a deposit of £0.01 into the designated bank account with a 4 digit confirmation code in the reference. Check the bank statement online for the transaction, enter this code when prompted in the same ‘Add bank account’ section, and the account should be enabled to accept payments.

For a business account the email address on the account may also need to be verified. To do this log in to the profile section of PayPal where there should be an email address on the right hand side. Click update email and enter an address, then check your inbox for a verification email from PayPal.

Once this is complete and the bank account has been verified, your account should be ready to accept payments.

Timing it right

As you’re adding value to the neighbourhood, local businesses will be keen to put their name to the cause. However, approaching them at the right time is essential to making sure that your efforts aren’t in vain! Businesses will only wish to back projects that already have a significant amount of backers, so make sure not to approach them prematurely. When the time is right, pop in and ask for a chat with the store manager ‘to hear their thoughts on a local community project you’re running’. Try and genuinely get their views on the area, and see what they think about your project – they may have good advice for you!

If they’re not in, arrange a time to come back, or if that’s not possible ask for an email address/phone number.

Being prepared

When you meet them for the first time, make sure to take a carefully put together info pack that includes basic information about the project, along with a clear ask.

Another good tip is to bring in a laptop or tablet and show them your Spacehive page, and the backers tab where they will hopefully appear if they pledge to you. It’s an effective way to show them that you mean business and that your campaign is getting local support.

info pack

Don’t just do a blanket sweep of the area where you spend all day visiting every business on the high street. You are far better off identifying a smaller number based on them having a potential fit with your project.

Check out what these businesses said to get a better idea:

  1. Local estate agents, Keatons, who backed the Wanstead Playground project, said “there were many reasons we chose to back their project, to mention a few we were helping provide a fun play area for local children whilst also increasing the value of the neighbourhood where we sell and let property. We pledged some funds but we also provided some signs to help spread the word of their campaign.”
  2. Little Bird Gin backed the Peckham Coal Line project because they’ve “lived in and worked in Peckham for over a decade and are always delighted to do [their] bit to help the neighbourhood and build the community.”

Approaching local and national press can be a great way to gather momentum for your crowdfunding campaign. People are more likely to back your project if they see exciting coverage from newspapers, magazines, bloggers, or other publications.

To post an article on your project page just log into your account and go to your project dashboard. On the left hand side underneath ‘Posts’, you’ll see ‘Press’. Press the yellow button that says ‘Add Press Coverage’ and you’ll be given the chance to add details such as the publication date and the journalist’s name, as well as a link to the article.

Save Madeira Terrace screenshot

Be sure to encourage your backers to share the article and spread the word. You can also post events on your project page, click here to learn how.

Getting media coverage is a great way to build awareness and get more people pledging to your campaign but it’s not always the easiest to do. Follow these seven steps to write a press release, contact journalists and let the world know you’re a community crowdfunding hero.

  1. Pitch it real good

Running a crowdfunding campaign isn’t in itself newsworthy (we obviously think it’s pretty great though!), so it’s important to wow the media with your story instead. Is your project the first of its kind? Will it break records by being the biggest, oldest, longest, most superlative of projects? Find the angle that makes your project special and selling your story will get much, much easier.

For more guidance, check out our article on how to write a powerful press release here.

  1. Start local

Your story is immediately more relevant to people in the area (and importantly they’re the ones most likely to pledge to your campaign!) so start by contacting your local newspapers and radio stations before going straight to the BBC!

  1. Research relevant journalists and publications

Is your project helping the environment? Or creating jobs? Or making something beautiful, weird or giant that people will want to know about? Consider which publications, or the sections within them, would be most interested in covering your story and contact them first.

  1. Reach out to influencers, not just media.

Zoella is a YouTube celebrity with more than double the online following of the Financial Times. She might not be the best person to promote your project but it’s a good idea to think outside of mainstream media and make a list of local bloggers, tweeters and community influencers (whether the head of the local Mumsnet group or the landlord of the most popular pub in town) who could help promote your project to an even larger audience.

  1. The sooner the better

Contact journalists early on in your campaign so that you are on their radar. That way you are giving them more opportunity to cover your story across the different stages of your campaign.

  1. Include high-resolution photos

A picture speaks a thousand words and can often sell your story better than your most powerful paragraphs. Oh and journalists always appreciate it when they don’t have to go finding appropriate images themselves. Fact.

  1. Reach out again every time you hit a campaign milestone

So they didn’t bite when you sent them the press release about your campaign launch? No worries. Get in touch again whenever you hit significant milestones – a crowdfunding campaign may not capture a journalist’s imagination but 100 or more local backers, celebrity supporters or significant donations may well do. Because if at first you don’t succeed, then do what the All Blacks rugby team would do… Try and try again.

And if you do manage to get your crowdfunding campaign in the press? Post the press piece on your project page!

In the event that circumstances change and you are no longer able to deliver your project please contact us as soon as possible and we will end your crowdfunding campaign. Doing this before you reach your target will mean that none of your backers will be charged. We recommend you use the Update Tool in your project dashboard to notify all of your backers before we end your campaign, ideally explaining the reason why you are no longer able to deliver it. Being open and honest with your backers will gain you credit even if the fact that your project won’t be going ahead is disappointing.

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After your campaign ends

A pledge is a promise that the backer will pay the project if their campaign is successful. When a project hits its target Spacehive sends an email to all backers informing them that their pledge will be taken in the next couple of days and reminding them to make sure they have sufficient funds available.

After this email Spacehive will collect the pledges and endeavour to send them to the project (more precisely, to the nominated project delivery manager) within 1-2 weeks. It’s very normal for a small percentage of pledges to fail during the collection. If a pledge fails Spacehive will send an email to the backer reminding them what the pledge is for and asking them to check that their GoCardless/PayPal account is set up to make the payment. Spacehive will attempt to re-collect the failed pledges twice more. Once 90% of the funds raised are collected Spacehive will then transfer the funds to the project creator. Backers who cancel their pledge after the target is reached, or whose pledge fails three times will be emailed individually with instructions on how to pledge to the project creator outside of Spacehive. Please note, if Spacehive cannot collect enough pledges that they deem sufficient for project delivery (e.g. less than 90%), then all collected pledges will be refunded to the backers.

For funds received via PayPal you will receive several individual deposits from each of your backers in your PayPal account. PayPal will notify you when the deposits are made. Once you have received your funds you can then withdraw them into your bank account.

For funds received via GoCardless you will receive a single deposit directly in your nominated bank account. GoCardless will notify you when the deposit is made.

If a project creator has not verified their GoCardless/PayPal accounts then the funds transferal is delayed. In order to make sure your account is set up sufficiently to receive funds, please either log into your GoCardless/PayPal accounts or contact their respective customer support teams.

Yes. However, if it wasn’t successful the first time, it’s worth considering whether you need to adapt the idea or your crowdfunding plan before starting again. Was your target too ambitious? Was its appeal too narrow? Did you underestimate the work required to receive pledges? Don’t worry if you don’t succeed the first time around; there will almost certainly be apparent reasons as to why, and if you are determined to keep going then we will support you!

After you’ve reached your target and the funds have been paid out, the main thing to do is focus on delivering the project. Along the way though you should keep your Backers up to date with regular updates, as explained here, and once it’s delivered you need to let them know, explained here.

There’s no further requirement to provide any more information to Spacehive, apart from filling in a delivery report once the project is up and running to share the impact you’re making. For the majority of projects this is optional, although we do strongly recommend you complete it to share the impact with your deserving backers, and to use as a project CV which may help you unlock further funding, or to raise money for another project. However, some Funds require impact reports from projects they pledge to in order to assess how their funding is being spent. This will be made clear during a pitch to a Fund, and also in follow up communication from the Fund via Spacehive.

Find out more about Impact reporting here.

After your project has been funded and the pledges paid out, it’s important to keep your Backers up to date with any developments in delivering the project. This can start with an invitation to a celebration event for the campaign, and run all the way through to a launch event when the project is open and ready to use.

Posting updates through the ‘Posts’ tool will send emails to your Backers and Followers, and post the information on the timeline of your project page, so everyone can see the great work you’re doing.

Posting an Update

Once your project is delivered people will want to start using it, so let them know they can! You can tell people it’s delivered via an update from the ‘Posts’ tool, and by sharing the impact you’ve been able to make through Spacehive’s impact reporting tool.

The reporting tool asks you about the tangible impact your project has made, as well as any other benefits gained from running the campaign and delivering the project. Whether you’ve provided jobs or volunteering opportunities, improved or created a local green space, or increased access to public art or sports facilities, you can share the impact to all your Backers and Funds through the one tool. The data you enter will then be turned into an easy to read, colourful report that’s shared on your project page, and via an email to your followers.

Impact report

For more information on filling in the impact report, read Spacehive’s impact reporting guide, here

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Funding Projects

To pledge to a project, just click the yellow “Back this project!” button on any live campaign. You will then be asked to enter your pledge amount and select if you want your pledge to be anonymous or not.

If you’re not logged into a Spacehive account you’ll be directed to log in or create an account. Spacehive requires basic account information (name, email address, and password) so that we can contact you regarding your pledge if need be, and so that you can edit your email preferences.

After creating your Spacehive account you’ll be able to select your payment method. Depending on what the project creator has selected, you may be presented with an option to pledge using PayPal (an account for which links to your debit or credit card) and/or GoCardless (a one-off Direct Debit from your bank account).

You will be asked to authorise the payment but will only be charged if, and only if, the project hits its funding target. If the project’s crowdfunding campaign doesn’t succeed, you won’t be charged anything.

In order to quickly and easily collect pledges for projects, Spacehive uses two secure, widely used payment platforms, PayPal and GoCardless.

We strongly recommend pledging through them, rather than cash/cheque. ‘Pledges’, rather than actual cash transfers to the project creator, are less risky as the money only gets released if the campaign is successful in hitting its target. It also means that if the campaign is unsuccessful then there’s no need to refund the backer as the pledge is simply cancelled. Pledges made via PayPal and GoCardless also have the advantage of showing in your campaign as being made by the individual backer, which in turn boosts its appearance as a popular campaign.

If someone wants to pay via cash/cheque, then they can do so by directly transferring this to the project creator, who can then upload this to their campaign. If the campaign is successful then the project creator already has the funds. However if the campaign is unsuccessful then it is up to the project creator to return them to the backer.

Yes you can. Just check the ‘Pledge anonymously’ box when you make your pledge (see below). This will hide your name but show the amount.

If you make an identified pledge and then wish to make it anonymous, please email support@spacehive.com.


If you are pledging from outside the UK and do not have a UK bank account, then your only option is to pledge via PayPal. This will allow you to pay from a non-UK bank account or credit and debit card linked to a PayPal account.

If you don’t already have a PayPal account then you’ll be able to set one up when making your pledge – it’s quick and easy.

Please note, if PayPal isn’t a payment method offered on the payment screen then you will have to contact the project creator who may be able to set up PayPal so that you can pledge this way.

When pledging through GoCardless the pre-authorisation is set up via Direct Debit, so although it is only a one-off, it will appear to be the same as any other DD’s on your account and statement. Don’t be alarmed! You will only ever be charged once for your pledge, and only if the project succeeds in hitting its target. After that collection the Direct Debit will expire.

You cannot amend the amount you’ve pledged via your Spacehive account.

However you can cancel your pledge in your PayPal account or your bank account (GoCardless) in your pre-approved payments or direct debits, then you can go back onto Spacehive and re-pledge the amount you wish to give. You cannot cancel and re-pledge if the project has already come to the end of its campaign.

You can also top up your support to the project by simply pledging again!

By pledging to a campaign, you are committing to supporting that project; cancelling that commitment is discouraged.

However if you have pledged the wrong amount, or pledged twice by accident then you have options to cancel depending on which payment provider you went through:

GoCardless – go to your bank account and cancel the pre-approved direct debit

PayPal – navigate to your pre-authorised payments and cancel your pledge.

This will then be updated on the campaign’s Spacehive page under the ‘backers’ tab.

If you have a private question that you would like to directly ask the project creator, then you can do so via email. To do this, you will need a Spacehive account, as only when you are logged in will you be able to see the ‘Ask me a question’ link on their project page (see image below).

If your question is more public interest (i.e. you believe that the answer to it would benefit other people viewing the page) then you might want to consider leaving a message in the comments box at the bottom of the project page.

Pop up Compost

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About Movements

Movements are communities of project creators and backers who come together to achieve a common goal – from transforming West Sussex and saving Lidos to creating new green spaces or fueling arts projects in Wolverhampton.

Want to start a Movement of your own? Consider becoming a partner.

For project creators:

  • It is a way of tapping into an engaged community of followers that are interested in projects like theirs
  • Discover funding and project support on offer – for example match-funding, media exposure, or volunteers

For people who are passionate about their local area:

  • Following a Movement lets you know about the exciting projects in the area, the new funding opportunities and the changes happening in your neighbourhood
  • A place where you can come together with the rest of the community – everyone from local people to businesses and councils – to make things happen

For supporters:

  • Offer cash, skills or stuff to support projects you care about
  • Maximise your impact by supporting projects alongside other businesses, councils, organisations and individuals

Discover Movements on Spacehive here.

CrowdFundLeicester Home (1)

Funding rounds are periods in the year where certain funders are primed and ready to pledge to crowdfunding projects. These periods are announced in advance and may vary depending on the location of the funder. For the project creator, being part of a funding round is particularly advantageous. By launching a campaign as part of a funding round, you are giving yourself more opportunity to receive a pledge from one of these funders, as they are committed at this time to reviewing your campaign and considering its merit. The support that you will proactively receive from Spacehive is also timed to help you prepare for launching by the round deadline, and then provide campaign advice as you move towards hitting your target. Cohorts of project creators form around funding rounds, meaning that it is possible to discuss your project with other creators in your area and share learning. This groundswell of activity happening at the same time also creates an amplified positive noise, which in turn makes it easier to get interest from local media and further your campaign reach.

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