Pathways: Voluntary Arts

April 9, 2015 by Perthshire Creates

Voluntary Arts Scotland, Creative Scotland and Perth & Kinross Council have joined forces to see how easy it is for people to access cultural activity in their local area – and what provisions are there for them by mapping cultural groups, venues, services and organisations across Perth & Kinross.

Taking place between March – June 2015, ‘Pathways: Getting connected in the voluntary arts’ will build a picture of the drama groups, knitting circles, choirs, meeting spaces, art clubs and opportunities to promote and share activity, transport, venues, funding and much more that Perth & Kinross has to offer.

“We think it’s important to understand how voluntary arts groups fit into the bigger picture in their communities,” says Voluntary Arts Scotland Director, Jemma Neville, “and would like to know what spaces and venues they use or need, how they promote what they do, and who they rely on for support and training. We believe it should be easier for people to locate opportunities to ‘get creative’ in their local area and the information we gather could eventually form a searchable directory of voluntary arts activity in Scotland.”

Perth & Kinross has been chosen because the mix of rural and urban locations make it similar to Scotland as a whole – which will help inform how this project could be done on a national scale.

“There is a rich and vibrant  range of culture and arts activity happening everyday  in communities across Perth and Kinross. We are delighted to have the opportunity to work with Voluntary Arts Scotland and Creative Scotland on this project which will help us all better understand what is happening locally and how we can help support this community activity in the future.” Spokesperson, Perth and Kinross Council

“Creative Scotland welcomes Voluntary Arts Scotland and Perth and Kinross Council’s decision to undertake this mapping exercise into the voluntary arts and crafts.  We know that voluntary groups offer a vast range of opportunities for people to take part in culture but this research will deepen our knowledge of the local cultural ecology by providing detailed insights into the opportunities to ‘get creative’ in the Perth and Kinross area.” Caroline Docherty, Portfolio Partnership Manager, Creative Scotland.

Over the next few months, research consultants Kirkhill Associates will be contacting groups, cultural venues, community newsletters, art form umbrella bodies and local amenities across Perth & Kinross, to gather information on what they do, what challenges they face, and how they’re connected to the rest of the arts world.

You can read more defining the Voluntary Arts in this blog feature by Robert Livingston of Kirkhill Associates.

They will be doing this through online and paper surveys, a dedicated website, social media, interviews, and three free workshops, open to anyone involved in the amateur and voluntary arts, bookable via the website:

  • Birnam Institute – Saturday 18 April, 3pm
  • Perth Concert, Saturday 25 April, 11am
  • Strathearn Artspace, Crieff,  Saturday 25 April, 3.30pm

Visit for full details of the project and the events being held.