[I]nspirational English designer Wayne Hemingway was in Kendal on Monday (June 25) to get behind the Great Place: Lakes and Dales (GPLD) project – a major new initiative aimed at persuading younger people to stay or move to the area.
The co-founder of award winning multi-disciplinary designers HemingwayDesign and whose first brand was Red or Dead, hosted an interactive event at the Box Theatre, Kendal College, designed to get people involved in the future of the countryside corridor from Grasmere to Skipton.
Said Wayne: “The area has an incredible 44% fewer 16 to 34 year olds than the national average so it’s vital more is done to safeguard the future economy. The event, called ‘This Is The Place’ was designed to start setting up a ‘placemaking’ project, which will be at the heart of celebrating the cultural distinctiveness of the area and the reasons why younger people might aspire to put down roots here.
“We had a fantastic evening with a packed room of creatives, innovators and pioneers – all bursting with ideas of how culture and young people can be at the heart of planning and shaping the area’s future.”
Programme director Lindsey Hebden was delighted with the enthusiasm shown at the event.
She said: “Momentum is well underway to deliver an impactful, engaging and exciting cultural event of major regional and national significance next autumn. There were so many fantastic ideas and opinions put forward.”
South Lakeland District Council portfolio holder for culture and leisure, Coun Chris Hogg, said: “Having someone with Wayne Hemingway’s reputation speaking to our creative and cultural sector about how we with Great Place Lakes and Dales we can use Culture to retain and attract younger people to our area is hugely significant. Wayne’s presentation has inspired interesting conversations already and I’m sure Great Place Lakes and Dales will be able to use these as a basis to develop our cultural offer and to make it more appealing to young people. Our ambition is clearly to be innovators and leaders in the rural cultural sector.”
GPLD is being funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Arts Council. It is being led by Craven District Council in partnership with South Lakeland District Council and the Yorkshire Dales and Lake District national park authorities.
As well as building on the cultural distinctiveness of the Lakes and Dales through a series of events, workshops and support for existing projects, GLPD is also looking at influencing local policy and planning to make the area more attractive for younger people to live and work.
Anyone interested in taking part in This is the Place, who couldn’t make the events but still wishes to be involved, can contact GPLD on [email protected]