Issue #077

Megan Hotson


Welcome to your weekly dose of TooXToo, this week featuring the new design innovation combatting knife crime: REACT, GAIA’s garden, Good Chance Theatre’s travelling refugee puppet, and the future opening of Koya Ko in Hackney.

Device to combat knife crime wins UK Dyson Award

Joseph Bentley, recent Loughborough University graduate has just won the UK James Dyson Award 2021. This innovator has produced an impressive handheld device which police and first responders can use to help stem blood loss from stab wounds. Bentley named his innovation ‘REACT’ and hopes it will help manage the rising cases of knife crime.

Bentley was inspired to create this clever device after hearing of two of his friends’ knife-related experiences. His concerns relating to the escalation of knife crime was solidified upon observing Government statistics- reporting that there were 46,000 offences featuring a knife or sharp instrument in England and Wales this past year.

REACT works off the premise that applying internal pressure is paramount when dealing with any stab wound. The emergency responder beckoned by the device would be first required to insert the tamponade into the wound. Then they would connect the actuator to the tamponade via a valve and select on the device the area of the body where the wound is located. Cleverly, the actuator then inflates to the required pressure based on the wound location. This process works to prohibit internal bleeding.

Commenting on the award, Bentley expressed a hope to commercialise the invention in the next few years. This will require further research and formal medical testing, which he implores “takes a long time”.

GAIA’s Garden

GAIA’S Garden is a brand spanking new community Garden located on Holburn Viaduct, London. The garden and its creatives seek to educate Londoners on sustainable practices- environmental, economic and social. Having launched in July, this pop-up is set to leave London mid-September, so be sure to immerse yourself in the beauty that is GAIA’s Garden before it is too late.

This Garden was conceptualised by five female creatives and crafted by a myriad of young souls from across the city. It is more than a garden- it is a space that facilitates workshops and events on sustainability led by organisations like UK Student Climate Network, Climate in Colour, Sound Advice and Boy Blue.

The female team behind the vision have an interest in disciplines ranging from fashion, graphic design, movement, music, and photography. Collectively they strive to present sustainability through a more inclusive and feminist lens.

This community pop up is also part of a bigger initiative of the Lord Mayor’s Culture and Commerce Taskforce which seeks to enhance the city. This is being enacted by repurposing commercial spaces across London with curated creative activity to bring the space to life and encourage engagement.

The Walk: Stephen Daldry and Good Chance Theatre's travelling refugee puppet

Spearheaded by Stephen Daldry and Good Chance theatre, The Walk witnesses a giant puppet refugee is 3.5-metre in height and represents a nine-year-old Syrian refugee girl, Little Amal, who is embarking on an 8,000-km, four-month journey from the Syria-Turkey border to the UK in search of her mother.

This walking form of public art is “a celebration of migration and cultural diversity” which endeavours to encourage other efforts of its kind. Little Amal stops off along her journey where she is joined by a variety of local artists who tell parts of her rich and evocative story. Her story is one that gives a voice to the millions of displaced refugee children who have made and continue to make torturous journeys to flee from wars or injustices in their homelands.

The Puppet was curated and brought to life by the Handspring Puppet company who also crafted the figures featuring in the production of War Horse. This emotive display of migrant dislocation is available to see in London on the 23rd October, where she will be woken on the steps of St Paul’s cathedral. In the meantime, she can be followed on social media, and donations can be made to help to fund Amal’s journey at £1 per step.

Koya, Ko- Hackney

The Koya team have taken to East London to open a sister restaurant to their venue in Soho. The new space opens on the 13th September and will not only be home to a new eatery in East London- but a new culture. Koya Ko in Hackney will be guided by the culture ‘Tachi-gui’ which translates to ‘dining whilst standing’.

This new foodie destination is inspired by the train station noodle bars that litter the streets of Japan and will feature standing counters to eat Koya Ko’s authentic dishes from.

Fast ways of life are permeating not only how we work and socialise- but how we eat. The team at Koya are demonstratively tapping into trends radiating from living an increasingly fast-paced life in the city. The perfect slurp and bite stop-off before that busy commute home, or to work: Koya Ko on Broad Street, Hackney.

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