Cross sector collaboration with Raspberry Pi across Essex

The Southend Tech Raspberry Pi community is central to a cross sector collaborative group working with Southend Borough Council (SBC) to solve social issues, drive innovation, economic growth and digital transformation to make Southend a thriving tech town. See slides below.

We’re now expanding across Essex and are looking for partners to collaborate with us and to support activities and events, initially with the Southend and Chelmsford Raspberry Jam Young Digital Makers taking central stage, visiting and working with businesses and organisationsΒ  and developing industry skills.

They will then contribute to the larger events showing and talking about their projects and the activities by running and helping at skills workshops.

12yrs – 18yrs sign up here to be invited to events. (Or Code Club / Raspberry Jam regulars aged 11yrs+ )

Partners and parents are invited to take part in other activities including over 18 meetups like Southend Tech Meetup.

tldr; We’re looking for individuals, companies, organisations and venues to support them locally as we help transform the rest of Essex. See below to find out how you can get involved and slides / descriptions showing what we’ve been up to recently including dementia hackathon, Southend Tech Festival Raspberry Jam and IoT, smart cities and lots of cool projects.

Launch at Raspberry Pi Foundation event

The Raspberry Pi Foundation invited Southend Tech to give a talk about how we have been collaborating with others in Southend at their two day “Raspberry Fields” festival of digital making in Cambridge and the launch of the Raspberry Jam’s Young Digital Makers events was announced.

Link to presentation slides, explanations and links for more detailed information are below.

Launch of the Raspberry Jam Young Digital Makers events

The Raspberry Jam Young Digital Makers are awesome young coders and engineers. They create amazing projects with tech, learn new skills, and inspire, educate and help other young people and adults.
Check out what they have done in some of the slides below.


Initially, they will be the focus for cross sector collaborative activities and then take part in helping others progress, running their own workshops, showing projects and giving talks about what they have learned at larger tech events.

We’re looking to collaborate with businesses and other organisations, and need support such as equipment, staff (including tech experts), existing audiences, sponsorship, suitable tech talks / demos, skills workshops, venues and facilities, publicity and marketing, catering, social media, photography/video etc.

What is digital making ?

Digital Making is creating and learning about tech rather than just being a passive consumer.

It includes industry skills such as coding, electronics, data analytics, wearable tech, Smart Cities, robotics, entrepreneurial skills, 3D printing, laser cutting, IoT, hackathons, inventing, virtual, augmented and mixed reality, 3D rendering, cybersecurity, digital art, big data, digital embroidery, and phone apps.

Check out some of the projects at Coolest Projects where we will be applying to take part.


Presentation Slides

Brief slide notes and links to further info are below and the presentation slides are here if the embed doesn’t work for you :

2-15: Southend Raspberry Jam Tech Festival, tech projects, coding workshops, talks, IBM expert live coding.

16-20: Astro Pi – Coding science experiments on the International Space Station using Internet of Things (IoT) sensors

21-28: Focal Point Gallery “Maximum Overdrive” exhibition collecting Smart City sensor data, Raspberry Pi timelapse, @echoarcades Twitter AI bot

29-34: Microbits in Libraries trial and library coding activities

35-44: SBC Smart City trial with CISCO, Digital Southend Working Group setup.
Help with urban problems like pollution, parking, traffic, waste, lighting, environment.
CISCO showing Raspberry Pi as an innovative Smart device for Internet of Things and smart cities.
Value of open data, co production. Creating an open dataset of parking spaces – possible workshop.

45-53: SBC bought a Β£17,000 Pepper Robot to inspire tech solutions for social care.
Lots of interest in coding it and tech for social care solutions – can do similar with Raspberry Pi robot, Google artificial intelligence kits and cloud apis.

54-62: 2 winning entries to Essex County Councils dementia challenge competition ,including an 11 year old digital maker prototyping on a Raspberry Pi and our hackathon.

63-69: Winner of the CityVerve (UK smart city) hackathon demonstrator was a Raspberry Pi controlled smart bike light system which most of the audience could do in an hour workshop. Took the professionals coders and designers 2 days with lots of help and resources !

70-73: Southend Digital Professionals networking to improve digital skills, discuss ethics of AI etc.

74-88: TechCityonSea business networking, companies looking to collaborate, DL100 award

89-91: Chelmsford Raspberry Pi Smart City art installation visualising pollution data

92-94 Desire to code massive Southend seafront light towers to respond to data…

95-104 Raspberry Jam Young Digital Makers – designing tech to help blind people, create digital art projects (Pioneers winners), code IoT sensors in space, run coding workshops (10 year old girl), code VR games, reaching the BAFTA young games designer finals and creating smart city solutions to survive a Zombie Apocalypse (Pioneers highly commended)