Northumberland Cultural Network – a united commitment to Northumberland audiences in the past, present and future.
Throughout 2021, we were part of a group of Northumberland cultural organisations, committed to improving our understanding of the people of Northumberland, and their interests, wants and needs for culture and heritage in the region.
Mortal Fools, Alnwick Garden, Berwick Film and Media Arts Festival, Headway Arts, Maltings Berwick, Museums Northumberland, November Club, and Queen's Hall Arts Centre came together with Northumberland County Council to invest into strategic county-wide audience development. Newcastle Gateshead Initiative were commissioned to undertake research that examined the experiences, opinions, and insights of current and prospective audiences - and how perceptions of culture have changed since Covid-19. This included a mixture of surveys and focus groups - at events, in venues and community spaces, online, and on market days. The aim was to secure a broad mix of contributors - including young people who are both engaged with Mortal Fools and not. An executive summary of the report can be downloaded here.
We have taken some time to digest the research findings, and found it reassuring that our current audience development and community engagement work already complements the needs identified in the report. This said, we're always looking for new ways to hone and further improve the effectiveness of our work.
So, what's next?
One of the biggest benefits to the Northumberland Cultural Network so far has undoubtedly been having a forum for Northumberland organisations to come together, pool resources, connect, and collaborate. We have a shared passion for providing high-quality events, venues, projects and experiences for the people of Northumberland, and want to continue working together to further build audiences and promote quality investment and impact.
With this in mind, we would love to invite and welcome new and diverse members, who share our passion for arts, culture, events and audiences across Northumberland. Size doesn't matter, and you don't need to employ people - but the network will focus on issues affecting cultural organisations, rather than individual freelancers (although, of course, these issues are connected). New members might include:
You can find out more information here, and if you are interested in joining, please get in touch via email@example.com.