East Durham Creates is one of 30 Creative People and Places projects nationally, funded by Arts Council England. It is currently managed by East Durham Trust working in partnership and supported by Beamish Museum and Durham County Council via the East Durham Area Action Partnership and Culture and Sport Services.
East Durham Trust offers a wide range of services to all sorts of community groups, from cricket clubs to regeneration partnerships, music groups to youth clubs… and anything in between. Services include Funding Advice, Volunteer Centre, Community Engagement, Information and Advice, Research and Consultation and Encouraging Social Enterprise. Examples include Cree – community support groups to tackle social exclusion and mental health and wellbeing, Chit Chat – trained volunteers who ring elderly or isolated people for a chat, and Feed – a food bank set up and run by volunteers.
Beamish is the biggest visitor attraction in the North East, welcoming more than 650,000 visitors a year, employing over 370 staff and working with 420 volunteers. Beamish involves local people in making decisions about how their history is represented at the museum. As part of its ambitious Development and Engagement Plan for 2013-2025, setting out how the museum will continue to develop and thrive, Beamish has started a £17m project to transform the site, telling the story of time periods in living memory. The scheme includes a complete 1950s town and farm, and an expansion of the 1820s area. Find out more on their Facebook or Twitter page.
- East Durham AAP – will embed the project within the East Durham Action Plan, linking to the community-based action groups that can influence funding. The AAP will play an important role in linking to councillors and local networks of community groups, assisting with community engagement activities and securing funding.
- DCC Culture and Sport Services has an advisory role, connecting East Durham Creates with existing arts provision and networks, learning from past development projects and supporting the project to make longer term, sustainable change.