‘Transported’ to Boston

In December 2022, we bundled into a minivan and took a road trip to Boston in Lincolnshire, to visit fellow Creative People and Places project, Transported. Transported were one of the first Creative People and Places Projects to be set-up back in 2013, so have been up and running for nearly 10 years.

We were joined by colleagues from our Consortium partners, University of Derby, Derby Museums, Amber Valley CVS, and U3A alongside researchers Mark Robinson from Thinking Practice and Victoria Baker from Coventry University.

Dolphin Lane Heritage Mosaic

We wanted to learn more about the 10 year journey that Transported have been on, exchange ideas and glean valuable insights into the successes, pitfalls and challenges that come with being part of the Creative People and Places programme.

We were hosted by the full Transported team and Management Group who shared generously about their different roles and experiences of being part of the project. The project is hosted by the Centre of Culture and Creativity at the University of Lincoln, so there is lots of synergy with our relationship with the University of Derby and the CivicHUB.

The morning session was led by Sukhy Johal, who is the founding Director of Centre and chair of the Transported Management Group. He led a passionate discussion about the role of arts and creative thinking and the difference they make to lives and places. We also heard from researcher Mark Robinson who ran through some of the highlights from his 10 years of Learning report, that was commission by Arts Council England to mark the 10 year anniversary of the Creative People and Places programme.

Following the discussions, Nick Jones, Programme Director for Transported, led a walking tour around Boston to visit Transported public art projects which included the Boston Buoys and the Dolphin Lane Heritage Mosaic Project.

It was great to meet the team and hear them speak so passionately about their work and the impact it’s had.

It was also brilliant to spend some time with the Make/Shift team and consortium and start getting to know each other a bit better. There is really nothing like four hours in a minibus to help build new friendships!

Massive thanks to Tony from Derby Museums, Lynn from Amber Valley CVS, Bernadette from U3A, Rhiannon and Ian from University of Derby and collaborators Mark & Victoria, for taking a day out during the hectic run up to Christmas. And a huge Thanks to Nick, Anna and all the Transported team for welcoming us to Boston and sharing their experience and passion so generously.

We’ll definitely be keeping in touch with our peers at Transported as we begin our journey here in the Amber Valley, as well as getting to know some of our other neighbouring Creative People and Places projects here in the East Midlands.

Some key take-aways from the day that we’ll be holding on to:

Move at the speed of trust
Relationships take time. Patience, kindness and curiosity are key if we want to find our way together.

Stories of hope
Focus on strengths and possibilities that can guide us towards a brighter tomorrow rather than trying to fix problems.

Think long term
Don’t let short term funding cycles limit long term ambition. This work takes time and we need to be in it for the long haul.

Try things out
Be bold and take risks. Its normal for things to be messy and imperfect when trying new things out together. We’re learning. That’s the point.

Have fun
Make sure to have fun, celebrate the successes and look after each other along the way.

We’re steadily building relationships, meeting people and laying the foundations for something remarkable. We hope you’ll join us on this journey. You can get in touch with us via email hello@wearemakeshift.uk

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