Eastern European Cultural Celebration
Crowds enjoyed a live performance of contemporary Ukrainian and Polish music from Midlands based Ukrainian band, MUHA (“… combining the melodic beauty of Eastern European folklore, North Indian Kathak rhythms, Cuban beats and original lyrics, they mesmerise with a musical feast rooted in the Slavonic tradition cultured from the world.”) in January 2024. The free event was co-designed with Welcome Refugees (Redditch and Bromsgrove) and Centrala, who use arts and culture to achieve inclusion and wellbeing for Central and Eastern European migrants. Attendees were also be treated to dance, food and craft workshops. This was the first in a series of events and activities celebrating the culture and creative talents of Eastern European migrants in the borough.
Have a go Redditch! at Arrow Valley Country Park
In August, people from across the borough joined together to take part in the first in our series of Have a go Redditch! events. The sun shone brightly on Arrow Valley Country Park, the location for this particular day of outdoor fun, creativity and movement. Spray painting proved incredibly popular and so did the workshops on martial arts, bike repair, yoga, meditation, self defence, tennis and tricking, to list just a few of the activities people enjoyed. Delivered by Reimagine Redditch and Starting Well Partnership.
A Brand New Redditch
Reimagine Redditch needs to create a brand for the programme. So, the team has worked with local people, through a series of creative consultation sessions, to find out what is important to them about Redditch and what they love about the borough. The result: a range of brilliant mosaics for 'my town' and incredible spheres for 'Planet Redditch' - fresh from the powerful imaginations and skilful hands of school children, volunteers, community members, businesses and partner organisations. These will play a part in shaping the new brand. In fact, these pieces of art have been shared with the different brand designers and website developers being considered for the job. It's time to rediscover, reconnect, revive and represent everything that's great about the town, for everyone. It's time to Reimagine. Redditch is just getting started. Let's create.
Beach on the Green
Sandcastles, ice creams, deck chairs, buckets and spades, the sounds of seagulls: the centre pieces of a traditional summer at the seaside and all transported to the town centre for three days in July 2023. The sandy footprints and sunny faces said it all – bringing a pop-up beach to Redditch gave everybody the chance to relax and enjoy themselves – and for many, to experience the beach for the first time, or perhaps the only time in many years. Punch and Judy shows, puppetry workshops, giant puppets gone walk-about, the drums of a steel band, live DJ and singer, fairground rides, storytelling activities for children, and a learning bus all complemented the beach vibe and contributed to the success of this fun and participatory holiday themed event. Delivered by Redditch BID with support from Reimagine Redditch and Batchley Community Support Group. Many hundreds of people from across a wide range of local communities happily took part together.
The Art of Storytelling
MARVEL comic book artist and local illustrator Lee Bradley, Birmingham’s former poet laureate, Spoz, illustrator and artist Sarah Millin, film archivists, the National Trust, the Palace Theatre and local historians collectively celebrated the art of shaping and sharing stories through creative workshops, archive film screenings and live performance. The Art of Storytelling at Redditch Library attracted close to 1,000 participants from across the community in just one day - the largest footfall the Library had experienced since before the Covid 19 pandemic began.
Community members over the age of 60 from Batchley, Winyates and Redditch town centre explored a mixture of drawing techniques, painting styles and West African Djembe drumming at three separate participatory events designed to connect local people with others through a fun, creative activity. The sessions were developed with Inspire Community Training, The Older People’s Forum and Batchley Support Group after listening to what local people wanted to try. The activities catered for all levels of musical experience and gave people a chance to try something new to them while bringing them together as part of a group.
Inclusive Play and Creative Network
This taster session used creativity to bring together parents and carers of children aged 0 to 5 who have additional needs. The sessions involved screen printing and clothes upcycling in a relaxed environment, allowing the participants to get to know other parents and carers while enjoying a new creative activity. A sensory play session for the children was hosted in another room so that parents and carers could have time and space to get stuck into conversations and the activities.