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Council to host latest round of Arts and Culture Strategy workshops

26 July 2017

Derry City and Strabane District Council will this week begin a second round of Arts and Culture Strategy workshops to allow interested parties to have an input in shaping the region’s arts and culture strategy for the next five years.

Over the next three weeks individual artists, practitioners, organisations and venues will be invited to give their input on the strategy for 2017-2022 that will be finalised in September.

The latest round of sessions will focus on agreeing a set of priorities coming out of the discussions at the first meetings, identifying what actions are needed to achieve those priorities, who is best placed to take each of those actions and what will happen as a result.
In September, a final workshop will be held where all the sector consultation groups can meet together to agree on their collective priorities and finalise what will be included in the strategy.

A Co-Design group of local representatives from a range of arts and culture disciplines was formed earlier this year to assist Council officers and strategic partners on the development of the strategy.

The group held its first meeting at the Ulster Bank offices in the City in June and hosted its first series of workshop at the end of the month.

John Kerr, Arts and Culture Manager with Derry City and Strabane District Council, encouraged anyone with an interest in arts and culture in the city to take ownership of the process by attending the latest workshops which begin with a Cross Border discussion on Thursday July 27th at An Grianan Theatre in Letterkenny and end on Friday August 18th with a Literature workshop in Derry’s Verbal Arts Centre.

“This is an ideal opportunity for anyone working or with an interest in our local arts and culture sector to tell us their vision and help shape a strong and ambitious strategy for the years ahead,” he said.

“The contributions and discussions at the first series of workshops in June allowed us to build a broad picture of what the Arts and Culture Strategy should look like and this latest round of sessions is an opportunity to begin to agree specific priorities and actions to make that vision a reality.

“This process is essential if we are to design a strategy that allows us to fully realise our arts and culture potential, compliments our wider Community Plan for the Council area and builds upon the legacy of the 2013 UK City of Culture Year.”

The Co-Design group is chaired by Verbal Arts Chief Executive James Kerr who said he was looking forward to the process of working with Council and other interested parties on how best to take the City and District’s Arts and Culture strategy forward.

“The establishment of a Co-Design group by Derry City & Strabane District Council to develop an Arts & Culture strategy that supports and contributes to the wider Community plan is an exciting initiative,” he said.

“The main legacy of the City of Culture in 2013 was a general recognition that Arts and Culture can and will play a significant role in the social and economic life of the City and District. 

“This open, accessible Co-Design process is a fantastic opportunity for everyone who has an interest in arts and culture to contribute to the next stage of local development.

“I am delighted to Chair the Co-Design group which represents a wide range of views and expertise and look forward to working with the Council and all interested parties to develop an Arts & Culture strategy which will set out a dynamic view of creative activity for the next 5 years.”

The full list of workshop dates, times and venues is available online at http://www.derrystrabane.com/Services/Arts-and-Culture.

Sessions will include the following sectors: Participatory/Community Arts including Circus Carnival and Street Arts, Individual Artists and Practitioners, Music, Visual Arts, Crafts and Cinematic Arts, Literature, Community Festivals, Tier Two Festivals and Events, Arts and Cultural Venues (Various), Drama, Performing Arts and Dance, Heritage and Museums.

Anyone wishing to get involved are asked to confirm their attendance indicating which workshop they will be attending by e mailing [email protected].