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My Contribution to Voluntary Arts ‘Our Cultural Commons’ – a Series Of Articles

‘CultureBanked®’ – Our Digital Cultural Commons?

This piece is part of a weekly series of articles curated by Voluntary Arts and authored by cultural thinkers and doers. The series will be published between November 2017 and March 2018. It is being shaped in response to the emerging practice of cultural commoning and as a way of articulating ideas that have arisen in conversations about Our Cultural Commons over the past two years across the UK and Republic of Ireland.

Our intention is that the series will help make visible the cultural commons in action and will encourage new approaches to sustaining creative cultural activity in local places. And we hope that the articles and the conversation they stimulate will contribute to the forming of ever more enabling cultural policy.

In a cultural sector which diverges massively around ownership – or simply ignores it – it is interesting that ‘the commons’ is increasingly in the vanguard of conversation. Before you can share though, you have to understand what’s yours and what’s not. My focus in this article is on Digital Cultural Commons. For simplicity, I’m referring here only to artistic production made, stored, distributed or represented digitally.

The objective of (digital) commoning is that content should to be available to all equally – exploitable, but non-exclusive. Starting from a position of giving it all away is not going to lead to a common stock of anything and neither is centralising ownership. Thinking about cultural products as common resources to build from – extensions of the knowledge-based commons – sends some hard-working artists into a miasmic fit of income loss induced panic. So first a few observations about how much we do and don’t own in terms of intellectual property (IP) and what the opportunities are for our digital commons in particular.

tech computers digital

The IP system often claims to respect the ‘rights of authors’ but in fact, little protection or monetisation is possible until the rights we have as authors have been offered up to, usually, a publisher. Twitter, Facebook, Unsplash, etc., like most content management sites, have absolute waivers when it comes to remuneration for, or control of original work. Basically, they assume all rights and insist that authors relinquish them. Even where Creative Commons licenses are used for sharing (e.g., Flickr), commercial sales are not permitted – though links to websites are. Currently, open licences invite capitalistic exploitation without protection. Copyright is arguably a charter for the protection of publishers and owners of rights – rather than for the protection of content creators. But, as creators, we do have power – if we choose to exercise it.

The perception of copyright as a corporate or publishers’ tool for profit also creates a resistance among artists who do not view their original works as appropriate for reproduction, sharing or ‘trade’ worthiness. This reasonable antipathy also bolsters the ‘anti-copyright’ movement, which has found expression in alternative licenses. Not being ‘defined’ by market value alone is important for the arts. At the same time, it’s clear that cultural creativity cannot be separated from the market. At the nub of it, who can afford NOT to profit? At some level, the arts are always reliant on the market for their existence. And yet they fail collectively to retain much of the value they create, resulting in centralisation – and globalisation – of resources. The arts have human value, aesthetically, morally and spiritually. They also create monetary value. Re-connecting the two functions is a goal for digital commoning.

‘CultureBanking’ in the UK, is a response to this need for a re-connection of the moral, spiritual and material imperatives for art and culture. It is also a movement to retain IP and re-connect the market with the commons, ‘banking’ our communal digital rights to re-fund cultural activity in localities and grow capital for future cultural investment. There are parallel initiatives bearing the same name around the world, all of which acknowledge that the way we fund local growth in arts and culture is flawed. In the USA Culturebank aims to create “a new paradigm in financing the arts by re-defining returns on investment”. At Culturebank in Sydney the model is equally re-distributive but uses crowdfunding methods, more akin to the SOUP model, like a modern potlatch system. The aim of ‘CultureBanking’ in the UK is to build locally sourced and rooted ‘banks’ of IP in communities which can hold their own in local national and international markets, channelling investment and income back to a real place with real benefits: Essentially, a Commons Collecting Society. Currently there are few media or market platforms performing this function. By taking control of the assets you create, you’re saying: “We’re here – these are our terms, take them or leave them”. It’s an important message – especially for young people whose ‘digital footprints have farthest to go.

laptop turntable digital

Whilst Creative Commons, CopyLeft, General Public Licenses, CopyFarLeft, Human Commons Licenses and user generated ‘culturebanked®’ commercial peer production licenses all represent attempts to revise the licensing of IP assets in order to create some kind of commons of digital ownership, what we need alongside these is enabling technology in order to put it to use. The development of smart contracts based on distributed digital ledgers such as Blockchain and distributed peer-to-peer initiatives such as Holochain are the beginnings of a decentralised approach that can support a more equitable system – offering artists, arts organisations, creative citizens and corporate rights-holders the possibility of ‘holding common ground’.

As Arthur Brock of Holochain puts it: “An equitable economy requires a composable grammar of the commons”. In addition, by developing processes and creating easily adoptable solutions for artists and arts organisations to take a commons-based approach to their IP, we can regenerate commons-based access to markets.

As we make these changes, there is undoubtedly an ecosystem to protect. The everyday creative things that people do together, the publicly funded arts and the creative industries are what make up the ‘cultural sector’. Upsetting one may upset the whole ecology. But just because we shouldn’t upset something doesn’t mean it is working well. Indeed the ecosystem of cultural creativity is already upset in a few ways. For example, the Creative Industries Federation (CIF) recently quoted a value on the UK cultural sector of £92 Billion (for scale, the amount by which Facebook has grown in a year!). If we compare this to Arts Council England’s planned annual budget for 2018-22 of £622 million and imagined a tax relationship between the two, it would show that the private arts and cultural sector is re-financing its public-sector counterpart at a rate of little more than half a percent (excluding gifts, trusts and endowments)! This leaves over 18% of that £92 billion to find to match the contribution expected of all of UK companies in tax (19%). Something in the region of £17 billion annually, therefore, is ‘missing’. Arguably, this is the current size of an annually accruing debt of the cultural ‘sector’ to its cultural ‘commons’.

motherboard electronics computer digital

Some handling of IP by the BBC also illustrates the extent to which there is, as yet, any substantial move towards supporting cultural commons for creators. Consider, for example, ‘The Voice’, which has broadly followed precisely the same format as purely commercial channels and sold out it’s right to ITV in 2015. A good indication of a ‘commons-led approach’ is whether or not ‘contestants’ create, own and disseminate their own intellectual property. Universally, in these shows, they do not. The IP remains with the show – not the acts – despite the ‘public broadcasting’ remit. A commons-led challenge for the BBC (and other cultural producers) is to commission programmes and platforms featuring new artists who compete to make new IP (the BBC would still own the format) using peer production licences. In this way, the BBC would be helping to create a genuinely diverse cultural economy of new, accessible work and empowering creative markets and communities with real diversity and growth potential.

Empowering culturally creative people to control their assets and re-financing the infrastructure that helped produce them is the cultural commons which many are looking for. What digital cultural commons have too little of are payment gateways to enable this two way relationship between civic roles and voluntary action (production) to happen. By hypothecating the financing of local creative economies using smart contracts and peer-to-peer micropayments to create a commons of digital assets, we can encourage fairer ‘ownership’ and participation in cultural life.

The problems of ‘grass roots’ funding, co-production, local collaboration and inter-sectoral working begin to look more like opportunities too:

At Olympia’s Brand Licensing Fair last year, a stand simply titled; ‘Spain’ was busy promoting its cultural wares. There’s no reason any village, town or city in the UK couldn’t perform the same function – for private gain and for civic benefit. The beauty of digital though, is that this can be done with just a time-stamp, a hash and a license.

Liam Murphy,

Liam Murphy

Liam Murphy is a Civic Entrepreneur and Writer who has worked as a gardener, picture framer, artist, book seller – and runs an art gallery in Great Yarmouth! He’s currently transferring his LTD company into a shared art and framing workshop using common stock and facilities and writing a book about the cultural industries. He’s also involved in various local and national cultural initiatives, including What Next? Cultural Education Partnerships and the Gulbenkian Enquiry Into The Civic Role Of Arts Organisations.

CultureBanking provides ‘plug-in’ help for user-led Collective Rights Management to creative communities.
To learn more about or get involved with the project go to the CultureBanking Meetup group.

Our Cultural Commons and How We ‘Bank’ Culture

Retention Of Nutrients
Retention Of Nutrients (Photo Kyle Ellefson) 

A few recent developments:

Voluntary Arts UK have invited me to contribute the final article about #DigitalCommons  for this excellent series about Our Cultural Commons: in all sorts of contexts. It’s a really important subject at the moment and may well be a ‘third way’ for lots of places and communities.  Especially pertinent in the wake of the Carillion collapse…!

To further establish Culturebanking® I am working with Kendraio and other local partners to develop some of the open source tools needed for digital asset management and on some proof of concept projects for commons based Community (digital) Rights Management (Culture Banking) here in Norfolk.

There is also a Meetup group for anyone interested in being involved.

All best,


The Gulbenkian Enquiry and upcoming Gallery133 Activity

Phase one of the enquiry, along with consultations on phase two will be published on the 10th July.

Building the local cultural economy.
Building the local cultural economy.

Gallery133 is devising a workshop to follow on from it’s asset mapping and location work in Lowestoft and Yarmouth. The workshop is planned to take place in September and will be available to artists and arts professionals. We will be covering areas such as arts based regeneration, cultural planning and ‘growing the cultural economy’. Speakers and those wanting to attend are invited to contact Gallery133 at

More details to follow.

CultureBanking… Worth getting curious about?

Building the local cultural economy.
Building the local cultural economy.

Where public services are struggling in towns, cities and rural areas of the greatest social deprivation, the existence of market-driven environments are often even harder to establish and less central to the existing culture of those areas. Problems derived from economic stagnation such as de-motivation, lowered expectations and passivity mean that stimulating economic activity – and cultural economic activity in particular – is especially difficult. Harnessing and growing local communities’ enthusiasms, craft skills and innovation is more and more essential – especially ‘post Brexit’.

Arts organisations and individuals are finding themselves in often foreign environments where they are being asked to demonstrate commercial viability and to become almost entirely self funding – or perish – particularly those who relied on Local Authorities. (See #CivicRoleArts in January 2017 for results of the Gulbenkian Enquiry into the Civic Role of Arts Orgs, which Gallery 133 has contributed to)

Even in the state run NPO environment, there is a trend towards using public money to leverage private investment. There is a need on a local, national and international basis for new mechanisms which encourage a more ‘market – driven’ environment in the cultural sector, but one which doesn’t crush small and local endeavours. CultureBank is precisely such a mechanism…


A proposed mixture of online magazine and and guided donation website, crowd-funder, Collective Rights Management and ‘imprinted brand'; CultureBanking aims to act as a ‘route to market’ to value, support and ultimately re-cycle the cultural output of communities for spiritual, emotional, social and financial improvement and sustainability. 

A ‘local label’ that can trade globally:

We aim to help build local integrated thriving economies – where trade is a mechanism of connecting people and countering isolation. The idea is based on a combination of a gift-exchanging business models and asset based community development. 

Relying upon and working with FinTech developers in the areas of smart contracts and Distributed Ledger Technologies, Gallery133 is working in 2017 on elements of the business with a phased ‘Feasibility/Scoping, Testing and future Launch proposed…

By building connections between cultural producers and innovators and their fans, patrons, audiences or more prosaically, ‘consumers’ or ‘markets’, CultureBanking is inviting potential users to direct their cultural spending not just towards cultural products they enjoy (film, music, books, theatre etc) but also towards changes they want to see in the world  – both locally and nationally. 

We’re organising 3 focus sessions with local arts organisations in order to make sure the research and development comes directly from real needs amongst local artists, musicians and makers (Please see below for registering an interest in these sessions).

G133 is currently reserving IP rights and researching how CB might work across different medias from crafts to music to film and digital technology…

We are talking to potential partners and investors in all sectors and are especially interested in the potential for Action Research projects in UK Universities…

We’re also interested in working with arts organisations and companies from Fintech, IP legal, accounting and ‘Ap’ software development areas. if you would like to know more about CultureBanking, find out how it could benefit you or would like to sign up to a mailing list to receive updates about it’s future development, or possibly attend one of our focus sessions – please go to: and fill in the contact form details. There is also a Facebook page for Gallery133 and @thegallery133 Twitter account where you can leave any comments or queries.

To discuss any matters in particular, please use:

Liam Murphy.




It’s not complicated at all:

When you put your money in a bank, you hope for some interest back on it. It’s an investment. When you put money into a business, you hope for a dividend. It’s an investment.  When you pay your tax, you hope the local A and E department will save your life. It’s an investment. When your firm spends money training new recruits – you expect them to work for you. It’s an investment. Yet art is still  ‘it’s own reward’ and it’s funding is, literally, ‘a lottery’ – or else relies on some outmoded C.19 system of ‘patronage’. We can do much better.

Through the mechanisms of intellectual property rights, licensing, equity shares, crowd-funding and guided donation, it is possible to create some residual benefit when a piece of work ‘hits the big-time’ or even has just a small amount of success and to recycle some of that success back into the grass roots from which it grew and to strengthen these roots in order to grow, knit, weave, sing louder, write better, make new work… etc.

This is what #culturebanking proposes to do. Everyone had a ‘grass-root’.  What organisations like the Arts Council and others are now asking (via #64millionartists) more than ever before is:

How can we do this?

#culturebanking – have your say….

Developing Writing Opportunities in Yarmouth and Lowestoft.

To register an interest in Creative Writing Courses and Opportunities in the area please fill in the contact form.

What Next? Notes from Friday 4th Meeting – or:  ‘The (somewhat muddy) GrassRoots’

Dear All,

I hope you will not mind if I feed back my quite honest reflections following our recent Yarmouth What Next? meeting yesterday. Further below are (possibly more useful to WN?) specific news from recent meets:

We had several apologies from Melinda Appleby (Waveney and Blyth Arts and Landscape Writer), Seachange Arts and the Museums Service, Ellery Child, from other numerous local practitioners (who were each attending their ‘day jobs’) and from Hugh Sturzaker of the GY Arts Festival (who has been a constant supporter).

In attendance: Liam Murphy, Tom Richards (Comeunity/Vol.Norfolk), Patricia Peters, Daniel England, Alison Macfarlane, Julia Devonshire

It was a shame that Gavin Dean, theatre manager, couldn’t join us – but perhaps I should do more to engage!

Having come from a Great Yarmouth Cultural Heritage Partnership meeting previously, where I was asked by Hugh Sturzaker (the Chair) to introduce What Next? to the group, It had been noted by some members that in the absence of Seachange Arts, I was alone in representing artists and artistic production in the Partnership! ‘Heritage’ is a clearly distinct and better (financially) supported activity in Great Yarmouth.  There is a very clear deficit in support for new work by local people. Seachange have limited engagement in this area but are an art form – specific company and therefore not working comprehensively across all media. Opportunities in Music, Visual Arts, Spoken and Written Word, 3d, Combined Arts, Public Realm, Crafts, Film and New Media are great and largely under-exploited..

This meeting of WN? was called in response to a request from James Moore and other local writers, (around 20 at most) who have formed a local writers’ group called ‘Blurb’ – operative for the past 18 months.

In response to this request, I invited reps from WriterCentreNorwich, local writers and WN? attendees . Whilst I am not entirely pessimistic for the prospects of a What Next? group in this region (we had, again, some new attendees including the artist Julia Devonshire and Alison Macfarlane, Executive Director at WCN) I did feel as Chair, that WN? alone was not the ideal vehicle to meet the disparate but overlapping needs of people in this area who are interested in arts practice and keen to embark on professional development opportunities..

James was ill and sent Daniel, another member of the group in his absence, who was very eloquent in describing the group and the intentions of the group. The need to find opportunity and support for a variety of interests and needs was very apparent and the risk of such activities degenerating into less productive pastimes without support and steering was also articulated.

Alison spoke briefly about WritersCentre and Norwich’s UNESCO City Of Literature status. She explained that WCN would not be able to furnish any ‘grass-roots’ development with paid assistance and would not see a role for themselves in the actual development of that grass roots activity in the first place.  They would however most definitely welcome an opportunity to collaborate with an organised (and here I would suggest Yarmouth AND Lowestoft grouping). I am very grateful to her for visiting and being so supportive and her suggestion was, broadly, ‘go for it’. The challenge then lies with the creative community in the area to organise in a way that will allow for valuable partnerships like this (and others) to develop. (I am also aware of the work of Rebeccah Giltrow at Gorleston Library in this area and have initiated some contact there.)

I noted the same kind of ‘just do it’ response from David Lan onstage at the first WN? conference. I share the sentiments. However: ‘Just do it’ in London or Manchester is a very different call to ‘Just do it’ in Yarmouth…Opportunity is not geographically equal(I think we all get that). However, if, in the arts, we settle for an entirely market driven ‘attraction to the rich’ and ‘repulsion from the poor’ approach – what hope for everyone else? Where is that trickledown? UNESCO status in relatively thriving Norwich, 20 miles away is having virtually no positive effect in Yarmouth, but is probably dragging talent away…

Which leads me here:


At this point, I might overstep my role as WN? chair and apologies if this is so.  My feeling is that, having audited the assets available, what I have to offer are my joint abilities as an artist and writer and in running a productive cultural sector business. What is really most needed in GY is for people to have accessible opportunities, knowledge and facilities where they can ‘just do it’. I devised a business model whilst at Gallery133 (now Skippings) which I believe would enable a ‘just do it’ environment and given that this is quite congruent with funding now finding it’s way into Norfolk and Suffolk – I will be putting my efforts into establishing a nexus for creativity in the area.  I’ll be talking about this a little more under the #culturebanking tag via the Gallery133 website and on social media for anyone interested… please share. This was the reason I came to Great Yarmouth in the first place!

The Arts Council has begun to wrestle with funding ‘for profit’ ventures – and this will most definitely be (in part) such a thing – so I aim to convince them of the potential and other potential sources of investment. I very much hope that What Next? will be instrumental in helping to develop the thriving creative economy that is so desired here and will certainly be feeding these challenges back into the network to see how our larger institutions and arts organisations can help (if they can)…

As ever, we had a very interesting and potentially useful meeting.

Here ends the GY What Next? (slightly erratic) Report for the first quarter of 2016!

Addendum: Alison Macfarlane offered these further comments as a helpful correction to my not entirely perfect summary of her input to this meeting. It is both helpful and descriptive of the challenges that exist in Yarmouth for ‘creative production’ in terms of its relationship with arts and other areas of finance, funding and investment.

“WCN is very interested to know about writers who form groupings in the Gt Yarmouth area for whatever purpose – mutual support, artistic collaborations, community workshops and schools work, for example. We are not in a position to offer any ‘paid assistance’ to the setting up of these groups or the ‘grass roots’ development work that they may do on a daily basis. However, we would be interested in working in partnership with them where there was a sharing of information and resources, where there was mutual benefit, where we could jointly address some of the needs identified in local cultural strategies in the area, where there was a quality offer and where there was funding support to deliver.”

See #culturebanking for an elaboration and development of Gallery133’s ongoing research into both art and civics and the process of establishing and growing a local creative economy which fosters and promotes wellbeing in the community. Gallery133 will be working with the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and the What Next? Movement to further these goals and posting ongoing notes. queries and developments here.

Liam Murphy

Gallery133 | What Next? | #culturebankingGY

CALL TO ALL EAST COAST WRITERS: What Next? Meet @ St George’s Theatre March 4th 2 – 3.30 pm. All Welcome


Friday March 4th, St George’s Theatre Cafe, King St, GY, 2 – 3.30 pm.

Dear All,

The above meeting has been scheduled in response to requests from local writers with an interest in developing their work. What Next? is keen to initiate a discussion around the development of writing in all forms (fact/fiction/poetry/life writing/journailism/writing for performance/writing in the public realm/amateur/professional/ commercial/experimental etc etc) in the region.

Taking an ‘asset based’ approach, the meeting will be keen to hear from anyone with relevant interest and/or experience and we will attempt to begin by taking stock of what already exists and where future opportunities, collaborations and development might lie! There will also be a representative from WritersCentreNorwich present who will be able to offer some guidance where needed.

If you would like to speak on a related subject (5 mins maximum) please send an email in advance to: There will also be an opportunity to discuss WN? and to consider next steps in relation to this and art and culture more generally.

We will aim to identify some specific action points (with names and dates attached!) with a view to possible next steps…

Hope to see you there :-)

Upcoming News and Events:

The ADUK conference will be taking place in Norwich from 23 – 24 February . They will be particularly focused on their joint initiative (with Voluntary Arts) which sets out to explore new ways to sustain and develop the creative lives of our communities in all their diversity. What Next? will be hosting a world-cafe style event as part of it.

The LGA conference at the end of February.

Below are some upcoming events and links copied in from WN? Norfolk (with thanks to Gemma Layton of N and N festival and apologies where deadlines are a little tight).

Liam Murphy.


Tomorrow’s What Next? Norfolk meeting (Wednesday 10 February) will be from 1-2pm in the Playroom at Norwich Playhouse (42-58 Saint Georges Street, Norwich, NR3 1AB. Dr Anna Bull Researcher, Culture, Media and Creative Industries, Kings College London will be speaking to the group on her research into socioeconomics.

Upcoming meetings

Next week (Wednesday 17 February) our speaker will be Jenni Rant from the Science, Art and Writing Trust

There will be NO MEETING on Wednesday 24 February due to the clash with the AD:UK conference (see details below)

Then on Wednesday 2 March we have artist Molly Naylor speaking to the group. Molly is a scriptwriter, poet and performer. She writes script for TV, film, radio and theatre. She has written three live shows which she took to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and then toured nationally. Her most recent work is television comedy After Hours, co-created and written with John Osborne. It aired in October 2015. She is currently developing a feature film script, a graphic novel and her first poetry collection.

AD:UK conference, Norwich, 23-24 February

ADUK’s 2016 conference, in association with Voluntary Arts, explores our organisations’ joint initiative which sets out to explore new ways to sustain and develop the creative lives of our communities in all their diversity. The conference is hosted by Norwich City Council at the historic St Andrews Halls (see brochure attached).

Information, agenda for both days and ticket options here

Anyone based in Norfolk can get the member rate for the conference of £295 plus VAT 

If they are an organisation trading under £25k they can get a conference place for £195 plus VAT

There is also a student and artist rate of £125 plus VAT 

Please get in touch with Marion Catlin if you would like to take advantage of any of these special discounts – Marion Catlin []

Norwich Arts Centre Private View Invitation: Asia Alfasi

Please find below  an invitation to NAC’s next Private View, on 24 February which will launch the exhibition of work by artist Asia Alfasi, entitled ‘Baseerah – Journey to Sight’. See invitation at bottom of the email.

The Private View will run from 6pm until 8pm and will be followed by Asia’s artist talk, which in turn will run from approximately 8pm until 9.30pm, followed by an opportunity for relaxed discussion in the bar.

Asia Alfasi was born in Lybia and moved to Scotland at the age of 7, and then to Birmingham in her teens. Her work brings together Islamic, Libyan, British and Japanese influences. She won the Hi8us Midlands Stripsearch competition with her character Monir in 2003. She contributed “JinNarration” to the Mammoth Book of Best New Manga in 2007, and her short semi-autobiographical story, “The Non-Savvy Non-Commuter“, was displayed on the walls of Piccadilly Circus tube station as part of Thin Cities, the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the station’s opening, from 15 December 2006 to 31 April 2007. She is working on a two-volume autobiographical graphic novel to be published by Bloomsbury.

From Creative Arts East: Call to Arms for the Arts’ in our rural communities

It’s that time of year again where we are about to go into discussions with the local authorities who fund Creative Arts East to provide Village Screen and Creative Arts East Live in your area. This year, given that we know the budgets are tight and councils are looking to make significant savings as a result of the recent spending review, we need to shout loudly about the good work of the rural community promoters, Creative Arts East, and the value of our endeavours to local communities – and we need to do this at the earliest possible point, before any decisions about funding are made.

There is no better voice in support of arts in our communities than the people who participate in and attend Creative Arts East supported events, which is why we are once again asking you to lend your voice. Over the next few weeks we ask that you make your views heard by writing to your local Councillor expressing your support for their continued investment in the work of Creative Arts East, and to outline the impact of the service to you and your community, and the likely effect if this work ceases to be available.

In addition to writing directly, spreading the word and raising awareness through channels like Facebook and Twitter will enable to message to go further across communities and enable many more people to lend their support for maintaining these events.

As always, thank you in advance for your help and ongoing support!

Arts and Health Evaluation Report

The arts, including music, dance, theatre, visual arts and writing, are increasingly recognised as having the potential to support health and wellbeing. However, in order for arts to be included in commissioning of health and social care services, there needs to be robust evidence of their effectiveness, impacts and costs. This document provides guidance on appropriate ways of documenting the impacts of arts for health and wellbeing, whether through small scale project evaluations or large scale research studies. It suggests a standard framework for reporting of project activities that will strengthen understanding of what works in specific contexts and enable realistic assessment and appropriate comparisons to be made between programmes.   Read more:,406HO,FLWQAD,EH20D,1

Many thanks


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Links From WN? Norfolk:


£33,000 – £36,000 (pro rata) 3 days / week (0.6 fte) Permanent.


Writers’ Centre Norwich (WCN) is a leading literature organisation in England’s first UNESCO City of Literature. We are committed to developing the artistic and social impact of creative writing, reading and literary translation. We believe that creative writing, creative reading, and the literary arts can inspire, educate and bring people and communities together.

This is exciting times for WCN. Linked to the city’s status as a UNESCO City of Literature, we are currently working on the development of a National Centre for Writing which includes an enhanced artistic and learning programme and a £2.6m capital programme due to be completed in early 2018.

The post of Finance Manager will play a key role in helping to steer the organisation through this next period of change and transition. The role will lead on the long term financial planning as well as managing the day to day financial systems and processes ensuring organisational stability and viability. We are looking for someone who holds a professional accountancy qualification, has at least 2 years experience at a senior level in financial management, has experience of the accounting and governance requirements of a charity and limited company and can support WCN’s values and ambitions.

Closing deadline: 9am Monday 15 February 2016


To apply for this position please download a Job Application Pack and Application Form from


Suspension of Sweet Arts Services


Are you a cultural or creative employer?

Based in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire or Norfolk,?

Looking to expand your team?

Would you like to claim a grant towards the wage costs of a new person?

The Creative Employment Programme will complete its funding on 31st March 2016. That means that NOW IS THE LAST CHANCE for creative or cultural employers across Peterborough, Cambridgeshire and Norfolk to benefit from significant match-funding towards the costs of employing an Intern of Apprentice over the next 6 to 12 months.


About the Programme:

The Creative Employment Programme aims to support the creation of paid apprenticeships and internships for young unemployed people aged 16-24 who are wishing to pursue a career in the arts and cultural sector. Funding is available now for commercial or subsidised employers based in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire or Norfolk working within the following fields:

Museums, Festival, Carnival Arts, Literature, Theatre, Music Circus, Libraries, Contemporary Craft, Visual Arts, Galleries Dance

At least 50% of wage costs can be claimed depending on your requirement, location and need for financial support, but it could be up to as much as 80%.

Listen to what some of our previous interns and apprentices have to say about their Creative Employment Programme experience and learn more about how valuable it is to young people needing a step up into the sector!


Sophie Clouston – Project Administrator Intern

“Jobs in the creative industry are difficult to come by without the right experience, which is why I was thrilled to find an internship where I was able to learn on the job, earn myself some money and still gain experience in an area I’d like to further my career.”

Meghan Douglass-Ellis – Business Administrator Apprentice

“I’d been trying for years to find a way into the creative industry through volunteering without much luck, so starting my apprenticeship gave me the chance to learn practical skills and earn enough money that my journey along my chosen career path could take centre stage, instead of being something I have to fit around a ‘day job”

Sam Webber – Marketing and Events Intern

“After studying a creative subject at university I wanted to branch out into working in events and marketing whilst still being in a creative environment. My internship allowed me to work with people who have similar interests to me and organise events around about themes I’m passionate about.”

How to get onboard:

To become a Creative Employment Programme Employer please:


Or call us on 01953 713390

You can find out more by visiting:

Funder info:

Creative & Cultural Skills is the National Provider for the Creative Employment Programme, an Arts Council England fund. The funding is managed in Norfolk, Peterborough and Cambridgeshire by Creative Arts East.

From What Next? National

Proposed private letter to Jo Johnson re: HE Green Paper

See attached draft of a proposed private Letter to Jo Johnson, Minister of State for Universities and Science from individuals in the What Next? movement expressing interest in the Green Paper on Higher Education (thanks to Rosie Luff for drafting)

If you would like your name attached to this letter as a creative employer, then please contact Sara Green at What Next? with subject heading Signature for HE Letter by Wednesday 10th February. Please give us your title, name and organisation to include.


Reminder: English Baccalaureate Consultation is live and closes 29 Jan

It proposes making EBacc compulsory for 90% of young people as well as making it the overarching measure for judging secondary school success.

CLA Briefing paper attached below and link here:

Bacc for the Future:

Actions: Respond to the consultation, write to your MP and ask them to write to Nicky Morgan on your behalf, brief your board, staff, audiences and patrons, use any media opportunities to make these point.

Arts and Culture and the EU Referendum (paper attached)

This week we are revisiting our discussions on WN? And the EU Referendum and discussing how we want to engage in the next few months.


Invitation to a What Next? Young Vic meeting on Climate Change and Sustainability to be hosted by the Barbican on Wednesday 17th of Feb.

On Wednesday the 17th of Feb, WN? YV will meet at the Barbican at Cinema 1 in our usual time slot of 08:30. We will meet as usual, focussing the discussion on climate change. At 09:30 Paul Allen from the Centre of Advanced Technology will present ‘The extraordinary story of human beings energy and happiness’ in the cinema for one hour.

We would like to invite everyone across the movement to bring friends or colleagues to this event who may be interested in discussion on solutions and actions around climate change, sustainability and culture.

Press Links

London Mayoral candidate Sadiq Khan unveiled his new arts policy, from getting more children involved in the arts to stopping sexist adverts on the Tube

UK theatre companies have benefited from an estimated £25million of tax relief in first full year of government’s scheme

MPs are to work together in an All Party Parliamentary group (APGG)  to drive forward developments in the field of arts and health

Writing in the Telegraph, schools minister Nick Gibb denied claims eBACC will squeeze arts out of schools 

Around 400 members of the dance industry signed an open letter to Akram Khan following reported comments on female choreographers And Akram Khan responded

Yesterday the winners of the National Dance Awards were announced. Writing in the Guardian Mackrell noted that it was a good year for women but not ethnic diversity

Major new research project is to be undertaken to examine under-representation of disabled people in the arts

A new Banksy artwork has criticised teargas use in refugee camps in Calais                      

The Arts contributed £5.4bn to UK economy in 2014

Culture Secretary John Whittingdale has warned of a “danger” of too much arts funding being focused on the capital:

Eclipse Theatre Co’s Dawn Walton has set out her action plan for what needs to be done to improve diversity in British Theatre

Writing in The Guardian, Sam Jordison questions the decision to move the Royal Photography Society’s collection from Bradford to the V&A.

DCMS figures show that economic growth in music and the performing arts is stalling

Southbank centre has announced its 2016/17 classical music season

Lyn Gardner on the Arts Foundation Awards and the importance of supporting mid-career artists

Creative Scotland is to host its first London arts advocacy event at Westminster

Shakespeare’s Globe is to perform Hamlet in the Calais Jungle

Writing in The Stage, David Brownlee looks at hot and cold spots for arts engagement

<What would the UK look like without Europe.docx>

<What Next Draft letter to Jo Johnson.docx>

Best Wishes

Liam Murphy

mob: 07882 934100