Fun Palaces Ambassadors

Our Ambassadors are local people working with a variety of partner organisations across the UK. Like the Fun Palaces core team, they are all part-time, this means that their own interests and passions both feed and are supported by their work with Fun Palaces.

The connections between individual Ambassadors, their local communities and the partner organisations (each with a different focus) extends the work Ambassadors can do locally and regionally.

In our quarterly Action Research days we learn from each other and from local Fun Palaces Makers, widening our impact and deepening our understanding of the work we are doing together. This is the core of Fun Palaces – radical social change through tiny revolutions of connection – a cup of tea, a chat, new friendships grown in sharing skills or co-creating a local event.

Phase 2 runs from September 2019 to the end of 2024. With the support of The National Lottery Community Fund we are now extending this programme to Northern Ireland with partners Big Telly Theatre, to Inverness/Highlands and Islands with Eden Court Inverness and to Wales with National Trust Wales, and from 2021 to Rotherham with Rotherham Council, Gateshead with Sage Gateshead and Devon with Libraries UnLimited.

Phase 1 covered five areas around the UK from October 2016 – December 2019, Bristol, Cornwall, Scotland, Sheffield and Stoke.  With support from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Wellcome, Fun Palaces and our partner organisations combined local cultural activism with quarterly Action Research events for Ambassadors, Fun Palaces Makers and partner organisation staff. What we discovered was that the friendships that grew through the Action Research meetings were core to the work itself.

Here are some local and regional stories from Fun Palaces Makers who worked with our Ambassadors in 2018.

Contact the Ambassadors
Cornwall
Celine Elliott at Cornwall Museums Partnership and Jack Morrison at FEAST
Jack is half of the Cornwall Fun Palace Ambassador blending with work as the FEAST manager, Creative Kernow. Born in Redruth, six-hundred yards from his current desk.
He studied at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and was the first Stage Manager hired by Shakespeare’s Globe where he remained for eight years.
“Best thing about Fun Palace work? Listening to people who want positive change in their communities.”

After a decade of youth & community work, Celine increasingly found her work focused on museums and galleries. Now working for Cornwall Museums Partnership, Celine identifies opportunities for public engagement across over 70 sites: nothing could be more fitting than the collaboration with Fun Palaces, celebrating creativity and propagating seeds of positive change alongside community groups, within (and sometimes without!) a huge variety of venues.

Northern Ireland
Siobhan Kearney at Big Telly Theatre Company
Siobhan has spent over 25 years working across the community and voluntary sector in Northern Ireland and is using this experience to reach out to communities, particularly in more rural areas, to connect them with each other and to help them shine a light on their creativity.  She is looking forward to the growth of Fun Palaces in NI and sees it as a way to get people talking, exploring creativity and very importantly – having FUN.

Scotland
Lewis Hou at Scottish Library & Information Council
new ambassador tbc at Eden Court, Inverness
Fun Palaces Scotland page here, @funpalacesscot on Twitter and on Facebook

Sheffield
Beverley Nunn at Sheffield Theatres

Wales
Bethan Page at National Trust Wales
Mae gan Bethan llawer o flynyddoedd o brofiad o weithio yn y celfyddydau gweledol yng Nghymru – mae hi’n angerddol ynglŷn â chydweithio hefo eraill i greu cyfleoedd i gyfranogi mewn ffyrdd ystyrlon a gwerthfawr. Mae gwaith llawrydd diweddar yn cynnwys cydweithio hefo plant a phobl ifanc, artistiaid ac athrawon ar gynllun Dysgu Drwy Greadigrwydd Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru, sy’n darparu cyfleoedd i’r partneriaid yma i gyd ddysgu a thyfu mewn hyder drwy greadigrwydd.
Bethan has many years’ experience of working in the visual arts in Wales – her great passion is for working with others to create opportunities for meaningful and valuable participation. Recent freelance roles include collaborating with children and young people, artists and teachers on Arts Council of Wales’ Creative Learning Through the Arts projects which provide opportunities for all of these partners to learn and to grow in confidence through creativity.