bait

Partnerships building a stronger future
Reflection Connection
Reflection Connection
Photo: Richard Kenworthy
Recreating Fred Laidler's Fish and Chips
Recreating Fred Laidler's Fish and Chips
Photo: Ashington District Star
Escape Family Support members at the Edinburgh Fringe 2016
Escape Family Support members at the Edinburgh Fringe 2016
Photo: Alex Brenner
Artists Robert Parkinson and Aaron Guy with Guide Post social club members
Artists Robert Parkinson and Aaron Guy with Guide Post social club members
Photo: Daniel Alecks
Frost of Forgetfulness
Frost of Forgetfulness
Photo: Richard Kenworthy
The Share exhibition at Woodhorn
The Share exhibition at Woodhorn
Photo: Jason Thompson
Participant
Participant
Photo: Richard Kenworthy

Where: South East Northumberland
With: Woodhorn Charitable Trust (lead body), Northumberland County Council Public Health and Cultural Services, Northumberland CVA, Northumberland College and Queens Hall Arts.

bait's ten year vision is to ‘create a long-term increase in levels of arts engagement, driven by the creativity and ambition of people living in South East Northumberland, having a demonstrable effect on the well-being of local people and levels of social energy and activism within communities and the means to sustain those changes in the future.’

We work in partnership with trusted organisations from all aspects of community life. This develops the arts in a holistic, ‘whole systems’ way, enabling people to build connections between the arts and other parts of their lives. It means that we are just as likely to work with social clubs, addiction services and children’s centres as we are with theatres, libraries and choirs. It is in these collaborations the real magic happens.

Shared decision-making underpins the programme, and local people of all ages are centrally involved in commissioning panels and project steering groups. Having a stake in the work that is commissioned increases engagement, opens up conversations about art, builds links between communities and artists and increases capacity to sustain arts activity independent of the bait programme.

To evidence the positive impact on wellbeing, with our partners we are using WEMWBS (Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being Scale). We are tracking the changes, with 73% of people reporting increased sense of well-being as a result of taking part in the arts.

Across the programme, communities are being supported to confidently come together to make a difference in the area where they live. There are examples of people forming new arts groups, attracting their own resources, planning and delivering their own events and building new networks for the arts in South East Northumberland.

The bait programme is inspired by the Pitmen Painters, the 'Ashington Group' of miners who transformed their lives and how they saw themselves through art and by ‘learning through doing’. The Ashington Group collection of paintings is on permanent display at Woodhorn Museum.

Case study examples of bait projects delivered between 2013 and 2016 can be downloaded here.

Watch a film about TURNS, a bait project with older people. You can also read a case study about TURNS here.