Beeston is such a hive of creativity! With so many resident artists and increasing opportunities to appreciate artwork we really are spoiled for inspiration. As soon as you alight at the Beeston Interchange you are just steps away from the street art murals that have enlivened some of our industrial buildings and added character to those of more historic value. Add in the painted telephone exchange boxes and we have an enviable street gallery to feast our eyes upon! The town also now houses one of the most accessible indoor exhibitions. Currently, in the old Argos local community projects and professional artists sit comfortably together in a window gallery of artistry worth shouting about – The Beeston Showcase.
If this public display of creative talent has fired your imagination, an obvious place to start picking up art and craft materials would be Artworks on the corner of Imperial Road. With shelves stacked with paints, inks and specialist papers they also have an extensive range of cardmaking and scrapbooking materials that would keep you busy until Christmas! They are looking to start their established weekly art classes back up in September.
The Young Artist’s Club was launched at Canalside Heritage Centre at the end of July. Low cost and allowing participants to explore a variety of different materials and techniques it is aimed at 8 to 12 year olds and ran weekly throughout the summer holidays.
Their ever popular Canalside Art Club also returns for the summer and can be accessed both in person or over Zoom.
Further down Chilwell Road you will find The Fabric Place, for those of us that prefer to sew than sketch. Just browsing the tempting collection of floor-to-ceiling fabric rolls is tantalising, especially at this time of year when their fruity summer fabrics are especially eye-catching. From curtains to bags to summer frocks, they have everything you need for your stitching projects. Bob tells us that are looking at introducing workshops later in the year so why not pop in and express your interest.
If you can’t find that finishing touch you are looking for, there’s always The Sewing Box further up the High Road on Willoughby Street, a definite top spot for trimmings! And if you are searching for craft kits, they have a selection to choose from to satisfy your creative cravings. They have a large range of fabric and wool too.
At teh Broadgate end of town is Pot ‘N’ Kettle Ceramic Café. A spacious place where your colour and imagination join forces to help you create your own special trinket or a personalised present for someone. If baking is more your thing then Beeston Baking School are running classes all summer from their outdoor venue on Cumberland Avenue. From rustic loaves to decorating techniques, Jill loves sharing her expertise and providing opportunities for a bit of experimentation with her tailormade sessions. We love her ‘Quintessential English Baking’ classes but then who doesn’t enjoy a freshly baked scone with jam and cream?
Down at Chilwell’s Independent Creative Corner, Cyrilyn invites you to join her in a personalised jewellery making session and be part of the whole process. If the joyful folk in her social media posts are anything to go by, this is often an amazing experience and fantastic fun! We adore the handmade wedding ring pics, but the one-off blue opal ring created by local lady Liz was an absolute stunner.
Larger organisations that serve our community well are Beeston Library, with their engaging family theatre productions and the annual Summer Reading Challenge. Lakeside Arts’ events for children take place in and around the Arts Theatre, with Art in the Park and Play in a Week.
As an added bonus, all the Arts Council funded activities have all been transferred online.
Log in for storytelling adventures, music sessions, craft activities, workshops, dance performances and a delightful digital book to evoke awe and wonder across the generations. Both venues are also well known to provide high end and community exhibitions that provide a little ambling time on lazier summer days.
There was so much creativity to be energised by in Beeston this summer and it will continue to inspire us well into autumn I am sure. I have not even mentioned the return of the ABC Art Trail or Incredible Edible Beeston! Why not follow the Creative Beeston Facebook page for updates on all of these and more?