PCP were at the recent Lancashire Encounters festival in town. There was a great crowd and we managed to talk to lots of interesting people – practitioners, fellow stall holders, performers on the day, the burger bloke etc etc
The ICP canopies were looking great and everyone seemed to be having a jolly nice time. Below are some photos from the landscape that we were populating of people & venues involved in the independent creative sector. We plan to build on this overtime and it will help develop our database of people we can support, communicate with and inform of opportunities. This will also form the basis of a bi monthly map/whats on we are trying to develop.
We’ve recently had TEC’s ‘future preston tour’ in the city, an exciting programme of interactive, pop up Sci-Fi. But what of ‘future Preston’, what might pop up in 2016. Here at PCP we predict that 2016 will be the year that the ‘creatometer of status’ will finally nudge towards our City. There seems to be a tangible degree of hope and confidence amongst practitioners, based on some exciting new people coming along and more established people getting together to talk more.
There’s opportunities around for creative input, like the new management company at the Guild Hall, new plans for the bus station etc. We figure it all had to come into alignment at some point – why not 2016. I reckon I’m gonna create an installation for that awful emptiness under the Premier Inn, at one of our most important gateways to the City (fill it will water and have plastic ducks stuck upside down on the ceiling). What are your predictions?
At the recent Lancashire Arts Exchange event, members of PCP showed up in a show of strength to promote what is going on in Preston (and has been for a long, long time). We were able to show a short film that displayed the diverse nature of creative work that happens in our City, later described by the event coordinator as “a gritty, underground, contemporary scene”.
There were also opportunities for our members to break out into smaller discussion groups to debate topics like funding, touring, marketing etc. This gave us an opportunity see where Preston creative provision fits within the future Lancashire & Northwest landscape.
PCP will be advertising other such events here on the site and we would welcome others to contact us if they fancy coming to the next one with us. One outcome from the event is that Neil Harris from the Arts Council will be coming to our next executive meeting in the new year. If you have any questions you would like us to put to Neil, please drop us a note.
What Next? describes itself as a movement bringing together arts and cultural organisations from across the UK, to articulate and strengthen the role of culture in our society. It is not just another campaign for more funding, but sees itself as a catalyst for fresh thinking and new ideas about the value of the arts in times of austerity.
An example of one of its real worries is that the current changes in education could affect the way the next generation values the arts in an even more severe way. It is this, as much as the economic affects, that What Next? feels an urgency to challenge.
There will be a national What Next meeting taking place on January 14th 2015, which is aiming to have all chapters participating in events on the same day across the country – i’ve been in discussions with the Northwest group and we’ve decided to jointly develop an event for that for everyone across the Northwest, so please save the date and i’ll be back in touch with details of what, where, when and how to get involved.