Cultural Wellbeing & York: A Creative Workshop

Workshop Workshop participants

This workshop was organised by Beam as part of its national Arts and Place programme, with funding from Arts Council England in collaboration

Tue 17 Jul 2018

This workshop was organised by Beam as part of its national Arts and Place programme, with funding from Arts Council England in collaboration with York@Large, with funding from the Royal Institute of British Architects Local Initiative Fund, and the support of York Council, York Explore, York Museums Trust, the Guild of Media Arts and York Architectural Association.

York Council's new Local Plan is the key spatial planning document that will guide the city's development over the next two decades. 

Thanks to partnership working over two years between the Council and York's wider arts and cultural sector, the Local Plan contains strong statements on the importance of both contemporary culture and heritage: 'It is equally important that York becomes, and is perceived as, a forward looking and creative city, one that values learning, retains its graduates...and supports creative, digital, and media industries...The Plan will ensure that the city's arts and cultural assets are protected and enhanced, with new assets and resources created whenever possible.'

As part of the planning application process, the Local Plan sets out for developers a range of expectations pertaining to 'cultural provision'. Principles of good design should 'add to the city's overall cultural qualities as a place, and also enhance its cultural capacity - its ability to create opportunities for cultural creation, expression, learning, sharing, and enjoyment...' (Local Plan Section 8.2)

In particular Policy D3, 'Cultural Provision', includes the requirement for a Cultural Wellbeing Plan to be provided as part of the planning process 'on all strategic sites, of whatever scale'. This would include an audit of current cultural assets and activity but also, importantly, a statement of the potential for increasing an area's cultural capacity and activity, and a plan to make this happen. This echoes a call initially made in the national Manifesto for the Arts in Place (Beam, 2015).

This workshop aimed to help York Council, developers, communities, and the city's arts and heritage sectors to better understand how to implement the Local Plan's policies on culture as part of good place-making. Calling on the wealth of knowledge and expertise available in and beyond York, the purpose of this half-day workshop is to apply theory to practice by creatively engaging Council planners and local arts, cultural, design and other professionals.

Links and Downloads

Past Activities

Framing Arts In Place: Preston 2017

Regional Conversations

Fri 14 Jul 2017
Jeffery Hall, 20 BedfordWay,WC1H 0AL

Framing Arts in Place

The first regional conversation was held in Preston, examining what a future national government policy for the public arts could look like. 

Arts and Place: Nottingham 2018

Regional Conversations

Tue 6 Mar 2018
Jeffery Hall, 20 BedfordWay,WC1H 0AL

Arts and Place participants, photo credit - Reece Straw

Primary and the national Arts and Place Working Group joined forces to invite the arts, cultural and built environment sectors from the East Midlands region to engage in a conversation around embedding the arts and artists in place. Over 50 participants attended at Primary’s artist-led space in Nottingham to hear from a range of speakers and engage in debate.

Big Meet 8


Wed 18 Apr 2018
Jeffery Hall, 20 BedfordWay,WC1H 0AL

Big Meet 8

“BIG MEET 8: Artists and the Arts in Place-Making“, organised by the Arts & Place Working Group, took place in Jeffrey Hall, UCL on the 18 April 2018.