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  • Writer's pictureClaire Venus

INTRODUCING NEW PLANS - Berwick Culture and Creative Zone

An inspiring home for culture and creative talent!

Plans are being developed to establish the North East as one of the most supportive and attractive environments in the UK for people and businesses working in the cultural and creative industries. To help realise this ambition, three Culture and Creative Zones (CCZs) will be set up in the region, one of which will be in Berwick-upon-Tweed.

Berwick is a town boasting many talented people and successful creative businesses, from visual arts, crafts and design, to illustrators, performers, musicians and authors. The town also offers a well-established, high quality Autumn festival calendar, including literature, film and media arts, and food.

By building on these existing strengths, even more can be done to maximise the success of our cultural and creative industries and people, helping them to develop, flourish, and take their work to new audiences locally, nationally and internationally.

The CCZ will build Berwick’s reputation as a town that values its artistic and cultural capital, together with its creative industries and people. A place that celebrates its unique culture and heritage and offers an inspiring and thriving location where people can develop their creative skills, make a career in the cultural and creative industries, showcase their work, and grow their creative businesses.

The CCZ will bring a wealth of benefits to the cultural and creative industries of Berwick and the wider Northumberland area. It will support and sustain existing freelancers and businesses and establish new start-ups, help to create new jobs, generate private investment, attract new visitors and spending to the town, and encourage more people (including young people) to choose Berwick as a location to build their career.

How can I get involved?

We want people and businesses from Berwick and Northumberland‘s cultural and creative industries to help shape the plans for the CCZ. The views of those already working in the sector, as well as those with ambitions to do so, are crucial in deciding what support and investment the CCZ will provide and how.

Our initial ideas about potential CCZ support and activities are summarised below. With your help, these ideas can be transformed into a practical plan that meets the needs and ambitions of people who work in, support, or aspire to be part of Berwick’s cultural and creative industries.

Please tell us what you think about the initial ideas for the CCZ, and what else you would like to see in the plans, by completing this short online questionnaire by 5pm on Wednesday 2nd February 2022:

The plans so far

Initial CCZ plans to support Berwick’s culture and creative industries include:

  • Affordable creative workspace

  • Repurposing unused buildings in the town centre to provide new places for cultural activity and for creative people and businesses to work and collaborate. This could include studios, workshops, production facilities, rehearsal, performance, retail or exhibition spaces, as well as outdoor public spaces.

  • Business support - Information, advice, mentoring and financial support to help early career artists, start-ups, and established local freelancers and businesses that have potential to grow.

  • Developing skills

  • Education, training, and work experience to develop creative skills, nurture talent, and support people who work, or want to work, in the cultural and creative industries.

  • Profile raising - Promoting Berwick’s cultural and creative industries, making their work more visible regionally and nationally, and attracting more customers and audiences all year round.

  • Community and audiences - Engaging people and communities and growing audiences locally, regionally, and nationally, through festivals, events, community programmes, and digital and online activities.


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