Our Story

You see that photo above? They’re Madrid’s little guys – the ones whose voice almost always gets lost in the noise of our booming city. They’re also the people whose stories I’ve been sharing for three years, and whose voice is about to get louder.

If you’ve been with me for a while, you’ll know that my name is Leah, the woman behind Madrid No Frills. I’ve always remained fairly quiet, slowly working away behind the scenes, creating something nobody else will. For three years, I’ve been sharing the stories of Madrid’s little guys and raising awareness of how we can all help: from having a caña in a no-frills, neighbourhood bar to taking to the streets and making some noise! I’ve shared everything I’ve discovered with you – whether it’s inspiring, curious, dark or difficult – in the hope that you’ll be galvanised to cherish and help the little guy too. And you’ve already helped so much!

MADRID NO FRILLS IS MY PASSION

What many of you may not realise is that MNF is not a professional blog… whatever that means. I have no training in writing, photography or journalism. Madrid No Frills is my passion. I’ve learned all these skills along the way, and I’ve created all of this without receiving a single cent, because I love it.

But after receiving over a hundred messages from you telling me how much you love what I do, I started wondering what MNF could become if I gave it even more of my time… time beyond evenings and weekends: professional time.

What if my Madrid explorer’s kit got even more use…

WHAT IF I TOOK THIS TO THE NEXT LEVEL?

What if one new article per week became ten? What if saving dozens of local gems became hundreds? What if I could share more hard-hitting stories from victims of gentrification, racism, homophobia and exploitation?  MNF is beginning to deliver the independent journalism and recommendations that Madrid so badly needs, and I think it’s time I took this project to the next level.

BUT I WANT TO DO IT MY WAY

Madrid No Frills will remain independent and I will continue saying whatever I want. This blog will remain free of ads and sponsors and will not be influenced by the rich or those in a position of privilege. I’ve never accepted freebies, never run ads and never done sponsored posts, and I’ve turned down every investor who wanted to buy my blog.

And no matter what happens – whether my attempt at raising money for Madrid No Frills is a huge success or an embarrassing flop – I will continue exploring and telling those important stories, and Madrid No Frills will always remain absolutely free to all of you, forever.

Am I crazy? Some people think so. Am I determined? Yes. I’ve created a platform that gives a voice to those who’ve lost theirs along the way – a platform that shines light on the invisible and sees the extraordinary in the ordinary. Only you will ever be given the right to support that.

TIME FOR THE UNDERDOG’S VOICE TO BE HEARD BY MORE PEOPLE

If you believe in Madrid No Frills and want to see it evolve into a rebellious publication that rivals the big guys, then even your smallest support will help to make that happen. I can do this – I know it. But not without you. So, that’s why I’ve decided to launch a community-funded Patreon project.

Become a member of my Patreon page and I ask that you give whatever you feel comfortable with. Just $1 is a huge support and will unlock my hidden content, created specially with you in mind, where I’ll reveal all the hard work that goes on behind the scenes – the work that you’re supporting!

And if you can afford to give Madrid No Frills even more, I’ve lined up a few extras – The Caña, The Ticket and The Map – to say a special thank you. But whatever you want to give ($1, $3 or $5 or more), it will mean the world to me and to the little guys.

I CAN DO THIS, BUT NOT WITHOUT YOU

Thank you to thousands of you for standing by me all these years, and to thousands of you who just stumbled across my work. Without you, my voice would just be white noise. Asking for your money is not a decision I’ve taken lightly, but I’ve begun to realise that for the sake of this city, for the sake of our disappearing gems and the communities they underpin, Madrid No Frills must grow! So let’s do this together!

Head over to the Madrid No Frills Patreon page, where you can set up your small, monthly donation and, once you’re in, you’ll immediately be able to access my behind-the-scenes stories, secret articles and obsessive map of all Madrid No Frills locations and more!

Now, with you firmly by my side, it’s time to turn up the volume!

Leah 💕

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