Applications now open!

CREATE PLACE: The Placemaking and Co-Creation Leadership Programme in North Staffordshire and Cheshire East

DEADLINE for applications to our first round of fully funded places is 24th September 2020!

The programme will celebrate and reflect the diverse achievements of our diverse creative and cultural talent, so will actively seek to grow diversity in the sector. Please note that this programme caters for

  • aspiring creative and cultural leaders
  • freelance practitioners with the potential to take up leadership roles
  • sole traders who are both artists and operate as a business
  • people early in their careers who need leadership and management training
  • people early in their careers who have leadership aspirations and need support and guidance to shape their career

Create Place is now open for applications. We are looking for applicants for this fully funded leadership programme, after a delay of the start due to Covid19.The amended porgamme will include online and blended learning methods if social distancing methods will still be active at the time of delivery. We are monitoring the Covid19 situation closely and will be following guidance issued by the World Health Organization (WHO), Public Health England (PHE) and Arts Council England

Please note this is not an artistic development programme. The programme is for emerging leaders in the creative arts, heritage, cultural or library sector who are looking to develop their career by allowing creative practices to drive co-creation and placemaking.

We are looking for future inspiring creatives who

  • are committed and passionate about arts as well as their regional communities,
  • have worked within the arts and cultural sector for at least 2 years, having gathered some experience in leading projects,
  • have a serious desire to impact the cultural sector and inspire social change through the arts,
  • feel a need to move their career to the next level,
  • are willing to reflect, develop their skills & behaviours and are open to learning new ways of working.

So if you are interested, please visit our website at for more details.

COVID-19 Announcement

We have had to delay the start of the programme by 6 months but will consider online and blended learning methods if social distancing methods will still be active at the time of delivery. We are monitoring the situation closely and will be following guidance issued by the World Health Organization (WHO), Public Health England (PHE) and Arts Council England.

CREATE PLACE: The Placemaking and Co-Creation Leadership Programme in North Staffordshire and Cheshire East

A total of £6m is being invested by Arts Council England in museums, libraries and arts across the country to help tackle skills gaps, a lack of diversity, and to support the continued growth and long-term sustainability of the sector.

Drawing upon the region’s rich creative heritage, the Placemaking and Co-Creation Leadership Programme intends to develop leaders who will play a transformative role in the future of the arts in the region.

Focussing on placemaking and co-creation, the programme will work with existing consortium networks, local authorities, higher education institutions and regional cultural organisations to address the needs of its rurally dispersed communities.

Carola Boehm, Professor of Arts and Higher Education at Staffordshire University, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be selected. We believe that the creative talent we have in North Staffordshire and Cheshire East deserves to be supported by a challenging and exciting leadership programme.

“We have a fabulous consortium of 17 experienced and creative organisations, who cannot wait to welcome the next generation of cultural and creative leaders to this partnership.”

The two-year project, beginning in January 2020, aims to reach communities perceived to have low cultural engagement, and to identify a more diverse future talent pool of creative leaders. This will include working with existing organisations such as the Cultural Forum, B-Arts, Cheshire Dance, BCB, Appetite, Spare Parts, XTRAX, Voluntary Arts England, Arts&Heritage and the New Vic to support the creative talent already in the region.

Anne Torreggiani, CEO at The Audience Agency, said: “The Audience Agency are delighted to be co-delivery partners. Placing audiences at the centre of cultural programme design and decision making, can have a significant impact on both people and place. We look forward to inspiring the next generation of cultural leaders.”

The training programme will involve residential stays, roundtable challenges and 1:1 coaching to develop knowledge and provide new skills covering a range of topics including business and digital skills, strategic partnership work, executive coaching and audience participation.

The project also aligns closely to the cultural strategies of project partners Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Cheshire East Council.

Councillor Lorraine Beardmore, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for sport, culture and leisure, added: “I’m delighted that we and the city’s Cultural Forum are partners in this exciting opportunity for the arts across the region. This programme will ensure our cultural leaders are suitably skilled to support the growth of the sector.

“The programme delivers on all of the main goals of our cultural strategy ‘Making the Creative City’, which is focused on growing the capacity and ambition of the sector and supporting strong leadership through mentoring and training opportunities. This new £150,000 award will certainly help to achieve these objectives.

“Supporting people to realise their ambitions and achieve their potential is at the heart of this two-year project.”

The Placemaking and Co-Creation Leadership Programme project partners are:

  • Staffordshire University (lead)
  • Staffordshire Coaching and Mentoring Hub (SCMH)
  • Keele University
  • Cheshire East Council
  • Stoke-on-Trent City Council
  • Stoke-on-Trent & North-Staffordshire Chambers
  • Arts&Heritage
  • The Audience Agency
  • Voluntary Arts England
  • North Staffordshire BCB
  • B-Arts
  • New Vic Theatre
  • Appetite
  • Stoke-on-Trent Cultural Forum
  • Cheshire Dance
  • Spare Parts

Supportive quotes

Peter Knott, Area Director for Arts Council England, said: “A key part of Arts Council’s role is to invest in people to ensure the sector is led by diverse, resilient and creative individuals.

“I look forward to seeing our Transforming Leadership investment in these three Midlands organisations help them create new local and international networks, develop innovative training opportunities and help nurture the next generation of creative leaders.”

Councillor Nick Mannion, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for environment and regeneration, said: “We are delighted that this bid to Arts Council England has been successful and we are thrilled to be working as part of this consortium.

“This announcement comes just as a new Cultural Strategy for Crewe is to be launched. The strategy recognises the need for young people to have opportunities such as this – to gain experience and skills in creative and cultural industries and to develop strong leadership skills for the future.”

Damien McGlynn, Communications & Partnerships Director, Voluntary Arts England, said: “We at Voluntary Arts England are delighted to be involved in this excellent programme. With the skills and confidence they need to progress, North Staffordshire and Cheshire East’s budding cultural leaders will be well equipped to foster a more supportive environment for creative cultural activity across the region.”  

Professor David Amigoni, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research & Enterprise) at Keele University, said: “This is a great example of local partners working together to help the cultural and creative industries develop and grow. Leadership plays a powerful role in any organisation, but these sectors have distinctive demands, and this funding allows us to build the right kinds of leadership development for the sector.”