There have been plenty of ideas bubbling away and slowly maturing over the past year or so and the pool of interested people is growing.  On Wed 27th Feb more new faces joined some familiar faces to discuss some of those ideas in greater detail.

We outlined the idea of the ‘Made in Chapeltown’ branding project (click madeinchapeltowncomplete to see the logo ideas that Tom has come up with) and we discussed the idea of businesses paying to be included in a ‘Made in Chapeltown’ directory (online or in print) and buying materials like window-stickers, paper bags, labels, stamps, etc to fund the admin, development and promotion of the brand/idea.  This doesn’t have anyone in particular taking it forward at the moment, but is slowly developing anyway with minimal pushing from Cath.

Then we moved on to culture.  Sandra W is keen to develop a ‘Chapeltown Arts Trail’, that could link into other cultural events locally, providing opportunities for performance as well as visual arts.  We talked about unusual gallery and performance venues, including people’s homes (as happens in Saltaire) over the course of a weekend filled with events and having a map/programme to tie it all togeher.  Other ideas since we started Conversations include Chapeltown heritage tours, a festival of lights (could include a winter market, lantern parade, xmas lights turnon, treasure hunt involving local businesses) and a food festival (local cuisines, local produce, etc).  So… we leapt to the idea of 2014 being a ‘Chapeltown Year of Culture’ and combining all the ideas.  Obviously this creates quite a few opportunities for people to get involved.  Here’s some more detail:

Chapeltown Heritage Tour:  Johanna is contacting the Civic Trust to get details of a Chapeltown tour they’ve previously done, which Larna thought was great.  Either they could do it again (our easy option) or they could give us the info so that we can do it ourselves. Randolph H works as a tour guide in Nevis, so he was also interested in this project.

Art(s) Trail: Sandra sees this as an artist-led or creative-led initiative: although funding for the admin side of it would be nice, it’s unlikely there’ll be funding for artists to contribute work. However, it is a show-case and sales opportunity.  In other places, artists have paid to be included in the programme as it will drive their sales.  Sandra will spend 3 months researching and working out the viability of it and looking for other creatives who want to be involved on a voluntary basis.  She’ll report back either at another projects discussion in mid-May or at the May Chapeltown Conversation on 29th.

Festival of Lights: prompted by wanting to make the Chapeltown Christmas lights turn-on an exciting and creative event enjoyed across the community, previous conversations ran away with ideas and it became a several weeks long programme of events.  The original idea came from Nattylyn, so if it’s something you’re interested in making happen, we can put you in touch with her.

Food Festival:  At the very first Conversation, Janet’s idea for a harvest-time food festival was very popular, but the group that started putting it together didn’t stay together to bring it off – we wondered if Janet and others would be interesting in revisiting the idea in 2014 if there were more people involved.

Festival of Ideas for Chapeltown: 3-4 years ago, Leeds Met Uni design students had ‘Improving Chapeltown’ as the theme for their semester’s project and came up with a truly amazing range of ideas for good stuff.  Although it wasn’t subsequently possible to get the ideas presented in Chapeltown, it would be great to see if it could be a project again in Autumn 2013. Cath to contact the lecturers who were involved last time to investigate the idea, perhaps in collaboration with a local school, church or other community venue.

Larna took on investigating funding opportunities for the various projects or possibly for some overarching funding to draw together the whole programme.

Garry will drum up interest to get more people involved.

We’ll mention all this stuff briefly at the next Chapeltown Conversations on Saturday 23rd March, although it really needs its own meetings from now on.