So here we are. This project, Creative Places, is being set up to support and strengthen those locally-owned businesses and social enterprises that provide places for Southampton’s creative, community activity to flourish. We know that our South Coast UK city is teaming with creativity and sociable places, but it seems that, as a city, we’re not that good at telling people about them.
Over the next few weeks, we will be establishing this website and our social media presence and also making more connections with people and places in the Southampton area.
We started 2017 with a meeting in The Art House cafe in Southampton’s Above Bar organised by Dangerous Ideas Southampton. Many of us in the city were dismayed by the loss of The Notes Cafe, a new start up that was doing amazing things to encourage music, poetry and had hosted events for Southampton’s first Festival of Sustainability. But the cafe struggled to survive, with crippling overheads and just not enough punters through the doors. Had it been able to continue for a few more months, or had a bit more support in setting it up, then perhaps it could have reached break-even point quicker.
The reality is, these smaller venues are crucial to our city. They provide an important point of contact for local people. They are a way into other community and creative activity, their social impact is often extraordinary. They are an asset that must not be overlooked.
We are collating our list of Creative Places venues. There are many places in Southampton which provide an important creative and community function, and we need to plot them all on a map to share here, perhaps develop into a printed map too. We will also be developing practical project ideas and events to bring people together on the journey of discovery.
So would you like to be part of our evolving project? Contact us to keep updated and help us fulfil Creative Places potential.