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Creative People & Places: Peer Learning Event at the Winter Gardens, Blackpool

Report From The Creative People & Places: Peer Learning Event which took place at the Winter Gardens, Blackpool  on Monday 15th  &  Tuesday 16th October 2012

Nick Jones, Elaine Knight and Carol Parker from the ‘Transported’ SH & Boston lead consortium attended the above event, to meet the other 6 consortia, learn from each other and establish a national peer support programme.

The other consortia are:
Barking & Dagenham
Lead: Studio 3 Arts
Blackpool & Wyre
Lead: Blackpool Coastal Housing Ltd
Doncaster
Lead: Doncaster Community Arts
Stoke on Trent
Lead: Stoke on Trent & North Staffs Theatre Trust Ltd
Swale & Medway
Lead: Swale & Medway consortium
Wansbeck & Blyth
Lead: Woodhorn Charitable Trust

We were joined by Arts Council Staff from Head Office and each region plus the following speakers:

John McGrath, National Theatre of Wales www.nationaltheatrewales.org
Edward Andersson, Involve www.involve.org.uk
Tom Andrews, People United www.peopleunited.org.uk
Matt Adams, Blast Theory www.blasttheory.co.uk
Anne Torreggiani & Helen Ball, The Audience Agency www.theaudienceagency.org
Scott Dickinson, Scott Dickinson & Co Ltd www.scott-dickinson.co.uk

The event was opened with a welcome speech by Cluny Macpherson, Arts Council Regional Director, Yorkshire and was followed by an amazing inspirational presentation by John McGrath.

Short 7 minute presentations were given by each consortium and then more speakers took the floor, followed by discussion in each consortium and feedback to the group.

We were kept very busy on the first day, having only an hour to get back to the hotel to freshen up before the evening’s session which included dinner and a visit to Blackpool Tower.

The second day began with roundtable discussions on the following:

Designing your arts programme/community engagement
Community engagement/sustainability and income generation
Sustainability & income generation/evaluation & working with universities
Evaluation & working with universities/designing your arts programme

Followed by a presentation from The Audience Agency and then Phil Cave (Director Engagement & Participation Arts Council) & Scott Dickinson lead a discussion on the evaluation plans for the whole programme.

After a working lunch, we had an interactive communications workshop lead by Louise Wylie (Director Media Relations, Arts Council).

The day ended with a discussion on the peer learning programme, outlining possible areas to explore and agreeing next steps.