The people of Newcastle Upon Tyne can now access a revolutionary laundry service - at any time of day or night. The new community utility came to be after Alison Hall, a local to the area, met a ME Group engineer at a Revolution machine placed at a nearby Morrisons. She was impressed by the concept and had a great experience using the machine herself.
“I immediately thought of how helpful it would be if we had one nearer to the Community Centre”, she recalled happily. She jumped at the opportunity to provide the automated laundry service to her community. After a call from our engineer, one of our BDMs local to the area was on-site the same day. Within four weeks the new Revolution machine was installed at no cost to Kingston Community Centre thanks to the revenue share business model of Revolution Laundry.
The installation brings multiple washing machines; one with 9kg capacity, the other with 20kg capacity (which is equivalent to 3 loads in the average household washing machine). The unit also features a 20kg dryer - perfect for the stuff that’s hard to get done at home. Use of the 20kg wash is priced at £10 and the 9kg wash is £5. Using the dryer starts at just £3.*
*Prices circa October 2022
The community has gladly taken to the Revolution. The team at Kingston Park Community Centre have even shared social media posts advertising the washing machine to the local community. A post on Facebook is captioned, “Just to make your washing experience better”, as part of their engagement with local users. Their efforts have proven to be successful, as the machine has gone on to take over £6,000 in its first three months - a great example of how site owners can improve the revenue of the machine on their sites with a little homegrown marketing.
To build upon the momentum, Kingston Park Community Centre held a free vend day on Wednesday 26th October. The promotion was a great local success, with many becoming introduced to the service for the first time. A ME Group engineer was in attendance to support the local event. On the day, 36 wash and dry cycles valued at over £300 were given away free of charge with the intention of creating repeat customers. According to Alison, it worked a treat.
“We absolutely love it! At first we were checking the machine to see if it had been used. Now we check to see if there is a washing machine available, which now there rarely is.”
Our baby groups use the machine every week and they will often arrive early to get the first go. They find it invaluable, as they get their washing done during class. We have other customers who own Airbnb who are regular users as they can claim back their washing through their business and I personally use the machine most weeks as it is much easier. People regularly use the machine to wash large items like duvets and rugs with positive comments about how fresh and clean the washing smells. All in all we have had lots of interest from people using the machine and it has been a brilliant advertisement for the community centre and helped create a great environment. It has brought more people here and has worked well with the Diner on site as people will get food and drink while they wait for their washing. People are also using the machine now because you can get 3 washing loads done in 40 minutes and people are saving on their own electricity.
Aside from energy efficiency for the customers, increased dwell time for site owners is another often overlooked benefit of installing a Revolution machine. “We are fortunate enough to have solar panels on our premises, so electric usage for us is minimal," says Alison. "We generate 9.6 KWH and use on average 3 KWH, which works to around £15 more per week on normal electric usage, which is more than covered by the revenue generated. Although we have only had the washer on site for 6 months we are already considering a second launderette to keep up with demand and relieve the queues we now get.”
From Community Garden projects to playgroups, Kingston Park Community Centre takes pride in offering the community access to a variety of activities and support. Their new Revolution Laundry unit has gone a long way to deliver on the needs of the local population as well as generate income and dwell time for the community hub.