Blog #11 - "School's Out!"


For the parents and carers of children reading this, brace yourself. This Is Not A Drill. School’s  out  which means you need some answers ready because you know you will be asked,  on a daily basis, “What are we doing today?”

I’m a single parent of 3 children, so believe me, I know how you feel. I have a massive piece of paper with a day-by-day plan for who’s going to be where doing what with whom. I never used to be that co-ordinated, but since taking on the running of Creative Workspace, I’ve had to up my game. It’s no bad thing. It slightly alleviates the panic of having to come up with something on the hoof all the time. And we are fortunate to have 2 weeks away, camping, and we certainly haven’t planned those any further than Be In A Tent Elsewhere.

So I’d like to take this opportunity to gently wave our summer holiday programme at Creative Workspace, which we are immensely proud of. We are bringing back our favourite popular creative facilitators as well as inviting some new people along for the party, and we think we have a pretty impressive range of arts activities on offer.  And if you've a nose for a bargain,  bear in mind that you'll save a bit of cash if you book up for our events in advance (links below or on our What's On page). Just £2.50 per child in advance, £3 on the door on the day.

We’ve also been working our little socks off to get our outdoor space ready for the summer, because we know that being out in the fresh air really helps to keep children happy! There will be creative activities available every day we’re open in our newly cleared patio area as well as some in the little woodland space next to Creative Workspace. This has been a real labour of love, but we’re really pleased with our efforts. So do please pop down and see what you think!

What’s On?

Tuesdays we hand over to Colourful Minds & Happymess, who have collaborated to bring us opportunities to junk model a crazy golf course (31st July) create a puppet theatre (7th August) and create a framed portrait (21st August). We’re big fans of Laura & Jenny, the creative forces  behind Colourful Minds & Happymess. They are truly brilliant and if you haven't experienced one of their workshops then now's your chance!

Wednesdays & Thursdays are our residency days. Local artists will setting up home in our studio for both days, and it’s worth noting the offer will be the same both days, so pick which day works best for you. Our first resident artists are animator Dan Templeton and illustrator Sam Church who will be collaborating on our Illustration & Animation Days  to create a series of animations which will be available to view online, just like this one Dan edited for us previously! (1st-2nd Aug)

Next we welcome costume designer Hazel Collins, who will be helping people get creative at our Costume Design Days. You can choose whether to sew or choose a no-sew option and leave with a brand new costume to wow everyone at festivals and parties! (8th-9th Aug)

Our final resident artist is Paul Midgeley of Twin Wave CIC who will be leading our Music Tech Days. He will be bringing many incredible piece of music technology to Creative Workspace including a drumkit you can play just by waving your hands in the air!

(22nd-23rd Aug)

Fridays are Theatre Days! We are proud to be welcoming visitors Nos Three Theatre company who start off our performance programme on 3rd August with their fantastic show “Friendly Ever After” exploring the delights and difficulties of friendship, followed by a family workshop about how to be silly without words!

I’m bringing my comic storytelling show “Sticky Ends” home to Creative Workspace on 10th August. Full of silly stories and songs, it’s a show about what might happen if you do really really bad stuff like drop lego on the floor or refuse to go to bed on time. It’s based entirely on real-life experiences (did I mention I’m a single mum of 3?) but to keep myself on my toes I improvise a brand new bonus story improvised from audience suggestions at the end. I’ve had some really great suggestions over the tour. Possibly my favourite one so far was “Don’t Throw Yoghurt On The Dog.” I mean, it’s niche, but it’s good advice, you must admit.

“Sticky Ends” will be followed by a drop-in story-making workshop.

Finally we welcome Paddleboat Theatre Company on 24th August who are coming from Exeter to play their show “Rustle”. Billed as “the greatest campfire story ever told: sleeping bags become monsters, rucksacks become friends and torches highlight the forest’s closest secrets…” This show is followed by an outside family workshop in our newly created woodland space next to Creative Workspace.

We’re finishing off our summer with a Make A Play In A Week project for 8-11 year olds. There’s still a few spaces left, so if you have a child keen on theatre then send them our way! We have no script and no fixed plans. The show will be about what the group wants to say and we will be taking our lead from the young people involved. Drop them off from 9.30am each day, collect between 3-3.30pm and then come with your friends and family on Sat 1st September at 2.30pm to watch the show we have created together.

After all that that, come September I’ll be having a sit-down, quietly delighted that the children have gone back to school …