The Big Issue (UK)

England, Wales & Scotland, United Kingdom
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Street papers provide global update on how the world’s homeless population is facing the coronavirus

The Big Issue took stock of how coronavirus is affecting the world’s homeless community, providing another update on just how severely the spread of the virus is impacting street papers and the people for which they provide an income.

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UK street papers sold in stores for first time in response to coronavirus crisis

UK street papers The Big Issue and Big Issue North will, for the first time, be sold in select shops and supermarkets across the country in response to the effects of the crisis caused by the outbreak of COVID-19. Vendors of both magazines had been advised to no longer sell on the streets after the UK government enforced lockdown measures in an attempt to stop the spread of the virus.

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Two Big Issue vendors on how the UK’s COVID-19 measures will affect them

With The Big Issue no longer able to have its vendors sell the magazine on the street, the great majority have seen their usual way of earning an income vanish overnight. Here, they describe how the coronavirus lockdown is going to affect them.

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Coronavirus: What does self-isolation look like if you sleep rough?

As the impact of the coronavirus spreads further around the world, guidance has been put in place for how to prevent it spreading and what to do if you suspect you have contracted it. However, rough sleepers cannot safeguard themselves in the same ways the general public can. The Big Issue spoke to homeless shelters and other front-line service providers to find out what plans they have in place.

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Vendor City Guide: Washington DC

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Street Sense vendor Wendell talking about Washington DC in the US.

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#VendorWeek 2020: Sharing space with Big Issue vendors

INSP recently moved office, and now shares a space with The Big Issue. During #VendorWeek, we chatted to Anabel – who has been selling The Big Issue only as long as INSP has been office neighbours with the Glasgow-based street paper – about getting involved and what the magazine means for her.

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Two Washington DC vendors on a big year to come in American politics

2020 will be a momentous year in US politics. Will Trump evade impeachment to be re-elected? Will the Democrats find a big enough character to run against him? To measure the pulse in the US capital, two Street Sense vendors from Washington DC, with very different opinions, give their take on the state of the nation.

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Vendor City Guide: Cologne

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Draussenseiter vendor Lothar talking about Cologne in Germany.

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Vendor City Guide: Basel

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Surprise vendor Danica talking about Basel in Switzerland.

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Vendor City Guide: Brno

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Nový Prostor vendors Jarda and Jozef talking about Brno in the Czech Republic.

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Vendor City Guide: Salzburg

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features married Apropos vendors Georg and Evelyne talking about Salzburg in Austria.

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Big Issue vendors write to their 25-year-old selves: “Don’t be too hard on yourself, it will help you understand people and their mistakes”

To mark the end of INSP’s 25th anniversary year, we have been asking vendors across the street paper network to write a letter to their 25-year-old self. Today, we hear from four Big Issue vendors in the UK – apt as the format is a twist on the popular ‘Letter to My Younger Self’ series from The Big Issue.

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Vendor City Guide: Mexico City

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Mi Valedor vendors Erasmo, Antonio, Juan and Isaias talking about Mexico City.

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Vendor City Guide: Piura

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Peatón vendor Eremia talking about Piura, a city in northern Peru.

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Vendor City Guide: Gothenburg

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Faktum vendor Eija talking about Gothenburg.

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Vendor City Guide: Bratislava

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Nota Bene vendor Peter talking about Bratislava.

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Street papers onstage with game changers of the magazine industry at Magfest 2019

The street paper network was represented at a recent gathering of the best in the magazine and publishing industry by INSP, Nikoleta Kosovac of Liceulice and Big Issue editor Paul McNamee. Spreading the word of the work of street papers, Kosovac and McNamee were involved in a panel, joined by individuals from other extremely influential publications, talking about how magazines can make change in the world.

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Vendor City Guide: Naples

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Scarp de’ tenis vendor Sergio Gatto talking about Naples.

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Our vendors: Remus Diaconescu (The Big Issue, London, UK)

Remus has previous for selling street papers. In fact, he’s a bit of a veteran after a six-year stint as a vendor in Amsterdam. Now, he is selling The Big Issue in London, and using the skills he has learned to hone his craft in this new environment. He will also get the chance to utilise The Big Issue’s new contactless payments scheme.

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Vendor City Guide: Oxford

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. Here, vendor Steve talks about Oxford.

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Vendor City Guide: Prague

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. Here, Nový Prostor vendor Slavko talks about Prague in the Czech Republic.

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Vendor City Guide: Cardiff

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. Here, Maurice Richards, a Big Issue vendor in Wales, talks about Cardiff.

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Glasgow pays tribute to much-loved Big Issue vendor Paul Kelly

After news of his death broke early last week, tributes began to pour in for popular Big Issue vendor Paul Kelly. Today at his pitch, outside Sainsbury’s supermarket on the city’s main shopping street Buchanan Street, where flowers, messages and mementos had sprung up in his absence, a crowd of people joined friends, colleagues, and others who had been touched by his character and presence, for a vigil in his memory.

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Vendor City Guide: Hannover

As street paper delegates arrive in Hannover for the 2019 INSP Summit, and embark on a walking tour of the city, Thomas, a vendor of Hannover’s street paper Asphalt, gives his insider tips to where to go and what to do.

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Our vendors: Dodge Dawson (The Big Issue, London, UK)

The Big Issue has been part of Dodge Dawson’s life for many years and he’s always found his way back to the magazine. He credits the magazine with helping him to increase his confidence and to learn new skills. After being helped by so many people in his life, Dodge now volunteers with Street Vets and the NHS in addition to working as a Big Issue vendor. He wants to give something back in return for all of the help that he’s received from others.

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Vendor City Guide: Melbourne

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. Here, The Big Issue Australia vendor Mark talks about Melbourne.

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Vendor City Guide: Ljubljana

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. Here, Kralji Ulice vendor Špela talks about Ljubljana in Slovenia.

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Pay It Forward: The Big Issue’s newest initiative helps vendors earn more with reader resale

The Big Issue partners with digital bank Monzo to create a new revenue stream for vendors: every reader has the opportunity to resell the magazine.

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Vendor City Guide: Memphis

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. Here, The Bridge vendor Tony talks about Memphis.

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Vendor City Guide: Philadelphia

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. Here, One Step Away vendor Sylvia talks about Philadelphia.

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Scottish school pupils collaborate with The Big Issue to create, and sell, a special edition of the street paper

The Big Issue has teamed up with the Social Enterprise Academy bringing together pupils from Scottish schools to put together a special edition of the street paper. The magazine, which gave the young people a platform to raise awareness about the social issues they care most about, is now being sold by the kids at their respective schools, and has been included as a supplement in the current edition being sold by vendors.

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Vendor City Guide: Trondheim

In collaboration with The Big Issue, vendors from street papers across the world have been sharing some insider tips on the cities they live and work in, which we are sharing during #VendorWeek. Here, Sorgenfri vendor Odd talks about Trondheim.

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Vendor City Guide: Montréal

In collaboration with The Big Issue, vendors from street papers across the world have been sharing some insider tips on the cities they live and work in, which we are sharing during #VendorWeek. Here, L’Itinéraire vendor Tuan talks about Montréal.

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Vendor City Guide: Milan

In collaboration with The Big Issue, vendors from street papers across the world have been sharing some insider tips on the cities they live and work in, which we are sharing during #VendorWeek. Here, Scarp de’ tenis vendor Aldo talks about Milan.

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Vendor City Guide: Copenhagen

In collaboration with The Big Issue, vendors from street papers across the world have been sharing some insider tips on the cities they live and work in, which we are sharing during #VendorWeek. Here, Hus Forbi vendor Csaba talks about Copenhagen.

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Vendor City Guide: Chicago

In collaboration with The Big Issue, vendors from street papers across the world have been sharing some insider tips on the cities they live and work in, which we are sharing during #VendorWeek. Here, StreetWise vendor A. Allen talks about Chicago.

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Vendor City Guide: Cambridge

In collaboration with The Big Issue, vendors from street papers across the world have been sharing some insider tips on the cities they live and work in, which we are sharing during #VendorWeek. Here, Big Issue vendor Lee talks about Cambridge.

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Vendor City Guide: Athens

In collaboration with The Big Issue, vendors from street papers across the world have been sharing some insider tips on the cities they live and work in, which we are sharing during #VendorWeek. Here, Shedia vendor Michael talks about Athens.

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The Big Issue launches first ever augmented reality street paper edition

To kick off 2019, UK street paper The Big Issue is implementing cutting edge augmented reality technology with an edition of the magazine to create an interactive reading experience, allowing Big Issue vendors to tell their important stories of experiencing homelessness directly to readers, as well as much more.

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Our vendors: Brigitta Claudia (The Big Issue, Glasgow, UK)

Brigitta has been a Big Issue vendor for three years now, after moving from her home in Romania in search of a better life and a greater chance of finding work. Here, she talks about her family, her pitch and how she gets on selling The Big Issue.

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INSP Vendor Playlist: Lee Welham (The Big Issue, Cambridge, UK)

This year we asked vendors: if you could give a song as a present this Christmas, what would you choose? The result was the INSP Vendor Playlist, which is now available for your listening pleasure. Big Issue vendor Lee stuck with a Christmas classic.

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INSP Talks: How street papers are revolutionising social enterprise

This year’s INSP Talks – a regular feature of the Global Street Paper Summit – was focused on social enterprise around the world, including what street papers are doing to branch out into other social businesses, how they are adapting their publication to come more into line with the modern social enterprise landscape, and a look at why Scotland is leading the way in the industry.

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Our vendors: Daniel (The Big Issue, Glasgow, UK)

With the INSP Global Street Paper Summit in Glasgow this week, it’s a great opportunity to hear from one of the city’s vendors. Daniel is a familiar face in the west end of Glasgow, and you might even recognise him from past stories featured in the INSP website and News Service. He even went viral not that long ago. Here, he tells us how he came to be a Big Issue vendor, getting back into education and his love of graphic novels.

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Glasgow welcomes international delegates to the 2018 INSP Global Street Paper Summit

The 2018 INSP Global Street Paper Summit kicked off on Monday with a welcome reception at Glasgow City Chambers, after visits to The Big Issue’s main base of operations, an alternative city tour and much more.

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Our vendors: John Williams (The Big Issue, Weston-super-Mare, UK)

John is a Big Issue vendor based in Weston-super-Mare who has been a magazine vendor for a few years. Here, he talks about his love for his home of over a decade, the town of Weston-super-Mare, and discusses what life is like for him as a Big Issue vendor.

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Our vendors: Cornell Jarea (The Big Issue, London, UK)

Cornell Jarea moved to London in 2013. Initially lucky in finding work, his fortunes changed when his job came to an end. He tells the Big Issue about life in the UK and how selling the magazine has helped him.

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Our vendors: June Fullerton (The Big Issue, Westbourne, UK)

When June’s husband died five years ago, she struggled to cope. Soon she was in a lot of debt and worried about losing her home. Thanks to selling The Big Issue, she has worked her way out of trouble.

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Big Issue vendor Daniel adds poetic voice to national conversation on housing

Popular Glasgow vendor Daniel Collins has turned his Glasgow wit and wisdom into a poem that contributes to a nationwide discussion on land and housing.

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#VendorWeek: vendors share what makes their part of the world unique

From Melbourne to Denver, Taipei to Athens, vendors across the globe share what it’s like to sell a street paper in their city… and so much more.

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Business leaders and politicians to sell The Big Issue in Australia

For #VendorWeek, more than 100 senior business leaders and politicians will sell Australia’s The Big Issue to raise awareness of the country’s 500+ street paper sellers.

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Our vendors: George Whyte (The Big Issue, Edinburgh, UK)

George has had quite a few housing problems over the past year and he was finding it difficult to get by. But selling The Big Issue gave him a boost. “I’ll do a wee dance on my pitch and the staff inside Starbucks will chuckle,” he says.

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October global street paper covers get scary

Between Halloween and Trump, there’s a frighteneing vibe on this month’s international street paper covers. Thank god for Street Cat Bob…

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The Big Issue celebrates 25 years of a publishing revolution

The Big Issue celebrates 25 years on the UK’s streets this week, with a exhibition in London, a star-studded film – and, of course, a bumper edition of the magazine. Watch messages from Julie Walters, Michael Palin, Mark Hamill, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, Chvrches singer Lauren Mayberry and more.

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Prophets of Rage to Bridget Jones – September street paper supporters

There’s support from big name stars featured on this month’s covers – but also stark reminders of why street papers are so necessary for homeless people.

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Through the doorway: ex-Big Issue vendor exposes life on the street with striking artwork

With The Doorways Project, artist Bekki Perriman looks back at when she was homeless and selling The Big Issue. Her gripping installation examines what it is like to sleep rough.

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#TakeTheBigIssue: funny video launch for UK street paper campaign

Comedian Seann Walsh stars in The Big Issue’s mythbusting new video alongside vendors, in a bid to get customer to always #TakeTheBigIssue.

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Real-life Street Cat Bob stars in new movie trailer

Check out the new trailer for the Street Cat Bob film – which tells the story of Big Issue vendor James Bowen and his high-fiving ginger cat.

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Olympic fever gripped world’s street papers this August

August’s street paper covers have the Olympic spirit, featuring ‘cuddly lawnmowers’, a homeless wedding, Steven Spielberg, and a cheeky little bit of rickrolling.

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Big Issue vendor to welcome millions of Heathrow airport passengers

“I am very proud,” says Floriana Stanciu as she is picked as one of the faces of the airport’s ‘Welcome’ poster campaign.

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Hard-hitting, striking… phizz-whizzing: it’s June’s street paper covers

A gloriumptious look at the world of Roald Dahl, a red-haired mischief-maker, a mafia flower plot and Yanis Varoufakis at the INSP Summit… explore June’s street paper covers.