As a part of the Bristol800 Universities Showcase Weekender, an all-day conference was held at Watershed on 11 November to examine the partnerships that have developed between universities and cultural organisations. In the South West in particular there are many examples of such projects.

Bringing together over 100 people from a wide range of cultural organisations and higher education institutions, the conference looked at the current state of partnership working in Bath, Bristol and Plymouth – with a case study on HE involvement in Hull City of Culture 2017 – and asked how this success could be built upon in the future.

The programme was as follows. Speakers’ names link to their presentations.

Part 1
09.00-09.40 – Registration
Chair: Martin Boddy
09.40-09.50 – Welcome by Mayor of Bristol, Marvin Rees
09.50-10.20 – Darren Henley, Chief Executive, Arts Council England
10.20-10.40 – REACT case study – Jon Dovey
10.40-11.00 – University/HE and Cultural Partnerships in Bristol: Andrew Kelly
11.00-11.30 – break

Part 3
Chair: Judith Squires
14.00-15.00 – Plymouth College of Art/Plymouth School of Creative Arts collaboration – Andrew Brewerton; Brigstow and Cabot Institutes – Rich Pancost and Tim Cole; Ujima Radio university collaborations – Julz Davis and Roger Griffith
15.00-15.30 – Hull City of Culture and the Role of Universities – Franco Bianchini

Part 4
Chair: Margaret Heffernan
15.40-16.30 – Vice Chancellor/ PVC Panel Discussion: Andrew Brewerton (Plymouth College of Art); Steve Egan (University of Bath); Judith Squires (University of Bristol); Steve West (UWE); Charles Wiffen (Bath Spa University).
16.30 – Phil Gibby (Arts Council England) Response
16.40 – End

Arts Council England has produced a guide to university-cultural partnerships which is available to read online HERE.