As 2016 draws to a close we would like to thank you all for your support, and look forward to some exciting times in 2017.
This year a major milestone was reached regarding the Halls Project; we saw the start of the fundraising process with the submission of the formal introduction of the project to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). This led to a very positive meeting with representatives from the regional committee to discuss how to take the project forward. On the back of this meeting, we have taken the decision to move the bid from a regional to a national application, allowing us to expand the remit due to the potential increased level of funding available. Whilst competition will also increase, we are confident that the project will stand up well at the national level.
Looking forward to 2017, we are anticipating the completion of the creative strategy work in the first quarter of the year, and the intention to submit the first round HLF bid by the end of the year. This will be another step closer to realising the rejuvenation of the public halls in the town centre.
Other notable developments in 2016 have been:
- Increased interest with HPBC in the creative industries, and their potential to enhance the economy of the town. This has resulted in the commissioning of a report into their potential and the creation of a strategy for developing the creative industries in Glossop.
- The gathering of momentum for the plan to develop Victoria Hall as the Victoria Arts Centre. Whilst we are not directly involved in this initiative, it fits well with plans for the Town Hall, and we watch its progress with interest.
- The relaunch of a new look whatsoninglossop.com website, which continues to be the number one events listing in the town. A particular thank you to the editor, Paul Beaumont, for his continued and significant input into the site.
Couple all the above with the very successful sixth Bankswood Festival (which, despite poor weather on the Saturday, saw the best attendance ever - you will find pictures of the event on the www.bankswoodmusic.com website) and further growth in the number of both artists and retailers involved in August’s Art in the Window event, there is no doubt that there is much potential for creativity in the town.
Although we have no direct influence in the following, it’s also great to acknowledge arts and music related activities associated with The Hadfield Art Show, Glossop Music Festival, Glossopera and The Partington Players and one can’t fail to recognize the revitalisation of the live music scene around the town with regular gigs at a growing number of pubs and clubs – The Globe, The Oakwood, The Commercial and The Queens in Old Glossop, Glossop Labour Club, The Folk Train and The Cellar Bar sessions at the Badger Gallery in Padfield, to name a few. The creative scene in Glossopdale is definitely on the ascendancy! We expect this potential to continue to be developed in the coming year.
Whilst the Halls Project has always been a long term plan (one that it is now in its fifth year of development), I get the sense that things are gathering pace and expect the new year to be an exciting one.
Finally, although 2017 will be a fallow year for the music festival in Bankswood Park, we will be pouring resources into creating a new festival in the town centre, with bands performing in front of the Town Hall. What better incentive could there be to demonstrate the urgent need to develop this iconic building into a premier event venue, which will enhance the commercial and artistic growth of our town? Whilst still very much in the ‘ideas’ phase, we expect plans to start taking shape over the next couple of months... so watch the website.