MORE than 130 people gathered at the Winter Garden to discuss Eastbourne culture and share ideas for how town cultural activities can be improved - through stronger partnerships, better communications and more grass-roots activity.
A wide range of people attended the first Eastbourne Culture Workshop representing sports providers, festival organisers, community groups, local organisations and individual artists and musicians. They were split into small groups to discuss a variety of themes.
Issues for discussion included business links, networks and support, improved use of open spaces, community involvement, shared promotions, and stronger connections between many clubs and societies. Participants, groups, clubs and societies will be invited to work in partnership with Eastbourne Borough Council to explore the key issues further and develop an action plan to improve Eastbourne’s cultural offer.
Council cabinet member for tourism and leisure, councillor Neil Stanley said, “The Culture Workshop proved a very valuable way of bringing people together from across Eastbourne so we could listen to their views and reassess our cultural offer.
“From our historic bandstand to the contemporary Towner Gallery, and from five theatres to a packed events programme, Eastbourne has many cultural assets but there is plenty more we can do too.
“There are many clubs, groups and societies operating in the borough putting on events, classes, workshops every week and we want to work with these to really bring all of Eastbourne’s cultural activities together and put culture at the heart of our community.
“Wednesday’s workshop was the first step in an ongoing process for examining culture in Eastbourne. I hope we can continue working with everyone who attended to further develop their ideas and come up with a plan for moving culture forward.”
The work is being funded through the Beacon Status Award for developing Arts and Culture in hard to reach communities, which Eastbourne Borough Council received through the education and outreach work of the Towner. The aim is to produce a framework for a stronger cultural sector in Eastbourne through developing partnerships and sharing resources.