Creative Barking & Dagenham

Working with local ‘Cultural Connectors’ to bring the arts to everyday life
DAGFEST 2018
DAGFEST 2018
Photo: Jimmy Lee
Well by Geraldine Pilgrim at the ex-Sanofini Factory in Dagenham
Well by Geraldine Pilgrim at the ex-Sanofini Factory in Dagenham
Photo: Sheila Burnett
DAGFEST 2019
DAGFEST 2019
Photo: Jimmy Lee
Mad Hatter's Tea Party as part of Sadia Ur-Rehman's neighbourhood commission at Mark's Gate
Mad Hatter's Tea Party as part of Sadia Ur-Rehman's neighbourhood commission at Mark's Gate
Photo: Sadia Ur-Rehman
DAGFEST 2018
DAGFEST 2018
Photo: Jimmy Lee
Royal Opera House Swan Lake at DAGFEST 2018
Royal Opera House Swan Lake at DAGFEST 2018
Photo: Jimmy Lee
Glow at Eastbury Manor 2018
Glow at Eastbury Manor 2018
Photo: Jimmy Lee
Silk River Project
Silk River Project
Photo: Jimmy Lee

Where: Barking and Dagenham 
With: Studio 3 Arts, London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, Barking and Dagenham College, Barking and Dagenham Council for Voluntary Service, Barking Enterprise Centre and our local resident Cultural Connectors.

“Creative Barking and Dagenham gives us the power to make decisions, no other borough does this.  It’s a big risk and the trust they’ve shown us has paid off.”  ROH attender, La Traviata, January 2017

"I’ve become more aware of how to be influential in steering group and event programming and am more aware of arts provision in the local area. I’ve been able to upskill myself and try new things, like painting. I’m not a visual artist, but the work we did with a local artist, learning to paint for free, was a new and good experience for me." Cultural Connector, Festivals Steering Group member 2019

‘When I first moved to the Borough from central London, I felt isolated, so finding this was the most welcoming part. It helped build a small-town mentality, like I walk down the street and there’s people say oh hi, hi! It’s really welcoming.’ Cultural Connector, 2019

Creative Barking and Dagenham(CBD) supports local people to create, commission and curate outstanding arts and creative activities in their areas, and to promote the borough as a place where exciting art - of all forms - is made and shown.

Creative Barking and Dagenham is one of the original CPP projects and will continue into a third phase of funding from 2019. Over the next three years CBD will build on the legacy of the project to date, creating opportunities for engagement and co-creation of high quality art. The programme will include neighborhood based creative projects, festivals and outdoor art events.

At the heart of CBD are the Cultural Connectors, an ever-growing network of more than 200 local adult residents. CBD works with the network to build enthusiasm for arts and culture at a local level. Cultural Connectors are the decision-makers in steering groups and panels; they allocate funding, select partnership projects and suggest and choose artists and performers for festivals, events and workshops programming. They are huge advocates for all the arts, creativity and culture happening throughout the borough. 

In phase 2 we had over 41,000 engagements with 66% of our audiences not having engaged in the arts in the past 12 months. Through participatory projects, outdoor arts festivals popping up in the streets, workshops in unexpected places, performances from national and international artists and more; reaching and engaging local residents from across the borough, from Marks Gate to Thames View, and beyond.

The CBD programme continues to evolve so check our website for updates and opporuntities for Phase 3.

GLOW festival 2018 from Blatella Films on Vimeo.