The new venture sees Carillion-igloo – the developer behind The Malings, a 76-home sustainable housing scheme taking shape on the banks of the Ouseburn – teaming up with Helix Arts in an effort to help local people from differing social backgrounds to engage creatively with each other, existing creative industries and with the ongoing regeneration of the Ouseburn Valley.
There is the promise of new opportunities for both employment and learning along the way.
The partners intend not only to engage with the creative community of the Ouseburn Valley, but also to capture the imaginations of people living within the neighbouring communities of the Byker Estate and St Ann’s.
Carillion igloo’s long-term goal is to ensure that both the new residents of The Malings housing development and people living in neighbouring areas enjoy a positive relationship with the current Ouseburn Valley communities.
To this end, Carillion-igloo is providing £35,000 to fund a programme of activities exploring the themes of renewal and sustainability, designed and co-ordinated by Helix Arts and delivered by local people for local people.
The programme offers the following opportunities:
- Young mums from Byker who run Y-Eat, a catering business set up by Newcastle YMCA, have been chosen to provide ‘meals on wheels’ to builders working at The Malings site. This will provide them with employment and expand a local social enterprise venture.
- Young people who attend Hotspur Primary School and Byker YMCA will be given the opportunity to work with professionals from Carillion-igloo – architects, planners, builders, project managers, members of the marketing team etc – to broaden horizons and raise ambitions for their futures.
- In the summer, local people are being given unprecedented access to a wealth of historical objects and artefacts from Tyne and Wear Musuems, Ouseburn Trust and Byker Lives as part of temporary community exhibitions inviting reinterpretations of what the Ouseburn means to local people.
- Carillion-igloo are supporting cultural events in Ouseburn, such as the Ouseburn Festival, to attract new and diverse audiences and extend the family activities. Provision of marketing/PR sets to maximise awareness of these events and consequent footfall.
- A longer programme of participatory arts activities will be delivered between arts organisations working within the Ouseburn Valley and the people living within the neighbouring areas of St Ann’s and the Byker Estate.
Kate Roebuck and Frances Arnold, Project Managers from Helix Arts said:
“It is a privilege to be able to help broker relationships between arts organisations in the Ouseburn and residents on the Byker Estate and St Anns. We have designed this programme to try and help realise benefits beyond the initial investment from Carillion igloo. We are helping people come together and shape arts activities for the benefit of their respective communities beyond the life of the initial projects. For example, we’re already seeing Y-EAT developing their business across the Ouseburn Valley as a result of the impetus of delivering meals to builders.”
It is hoped that this programme will create a regular, safe and creative space for dialogue between people living and working within Ouseburn, St Ann’s and the Byker Estate, challenging perceptions that exist on both sides and exploring ways in which residents can engage with the creative community of Ouseburn.
Toby Lowe, Chief Executive of Helix Arts and Chair of Newcastle Cultural Partnership said:
“Newcastle is producing a Vision for Culture which puts equality of opportunity at the heart of what our city’s cultural life should be like. At Helix Arts, we’re enormously proud to be working with Carillion Igloo to start to make that vision a reality in the Ouseburn, and the neighbourhoods it serves. Helping different people to connect and share their cultural experiences enriches everyone’s lives.”