Year 5 pupils have been playing their part in building a bright cultural future for Warrington.
Children from 20 primary schools across Warrington converged on the Town Hall for a special Arts, Culture and Heritage Day. A range of activities gave them the chance to discuss, share ideas and get creative about Warrington’s cultural offer.
The children learned about heritage and visual, digital and performing arts, before taking part in workshops, exploring what ‘Culture’ means to them, and sharing what they would like to see in the future in schools and the wider borough.
Joining the children for the activities were the Mayor of Warrington, Cllr Wendy Johnson, the Mayor’s Consort, Beverley Hallam and the council’s cabinet member with responsibility for culture, Cllr Maureen McLaughlin.
The discussions culminated in the children presenting their ‘Big Ideas’, with some of the creative suggestions including a fully inclusive ‘Digital Shop’ where young people can create their own digital art, and a ‘Music Hub’ where children can try out different musical instruments they might not otherwise have access to.
Cllr Maureen McLaughlin said: “Children and young people have a huge part to play in our future cultural success, so it’s really important that we give them a voice. This event was a fantastic way to learn more about what culture means to them, what’s working well in Warrington and how we can improve.
“It also gave us the opportunity to listen to a range of excellent, creative ideas from young people about our cultural offer now and in the future, and just as importantly, to get their views on delivering high quality cultural education at all of our schools.”
The event was set up as part of the work of the Local Cultural Education Partnership (LCEP), which aims to ensure that all children and young people in Warrington can have their say on culture and have access to quality arts, culture and heritage experiences, both as consumers and as producers.
Outcomes of the event and the follow up work undertaken by schools will feed into the cultural framework for the borough, and inform future strategic developments around cultural education.
The event was facilitated by the council’s Cultural Commissioning Manager, Lynn Radcliffe, and two teachers from Warrington schools - Kathryn Quigley, Deputy Head at Park Road Primary; and Jo Foster, Head of Music at Great Sankey High School - who have taken part in the Specialist Leaders in Cultural Education (SLiCE) programme, run by Curious Minds curiousminds.org.uk/slice