What’s Changing in Lincolnshire – A forum focused on ambitious development in the county’s visual arts sector.

When: Friday 8 March, 10.30-4PM
Location: Hub, Navigation Wharf, Carre Street, Sleaford, Lincolnshire, NG34 7TW
Attending: Booking is essential, book now via Eventbrite

Contemporary Visual Arts Network East Midlands (CVAN EM) is facilitating a discussion day for artists, arts workers and organisations based in Lincolnshire, and working within the visual arts sector.

Artists and arts workers will lead and contribute to conversations around the shifting arts and culture landscape in the county and their collective ambitions for Lincolnshire. Equally important to the conversation will be the opportunity to acknowledge, share and reflect on struggles, falterings and failings.

Almost a year into the current Arts Council England (ACE) 2023-26 portfolio[1], CVAN EM presents an opportunity to hear from Lincolnshire’s National Portfolio Organisations (NPOs), existing arts and culture provision and ongoing, artist-led and grassroots developments.

Over the 2023-26 NPO period ACE is investing more than £2 million each year across 8 organisations across Lincolnshire in a move to shift investment from almost exclusively going to the big cities, as part of ACE’s Priority and Levelling Up for Culture Places, which include Boston, East Lindsey and North Kesteven. Further investment in the county has come from sources including Historic England’s High Street Heritage Action Zone initiative and Government’s Town Deal Fund.

The forum will create space for (re)connecting and provide an essential opportunity for open and constructive dialogue guided by Tanya Akrofi, who will act as Chair. Forum participants will take on the role of presenters and panellists across several discussions throughout the day, engaging in conversations with each other and the audience.


What’s here: Sessions before lunch will focus on what’s here, what’s new and what can we expect. During the morning we will platform ambitious activity and investment in Lincolnshire’s arts and culture offer.


10.30-11AM: Tea, coffee & welcome
Refreshments and conversation followed by a 10 minute welcome from Hub and CVAN East Midlands.


11-11.40AM: Session #1: Together We Are Powerful (10 min presentation, 20 min panel, 10 min audience Q&A)
Presenter Kate Genever (artist) will be joined by panellists Lucy Lumb (Hub) and Lesley Farrell (Hub) to speak about Together We Are Powerful, a project which took place at Hub in 2023 and was co–produced by and with the local community. The project explored the power individuals hold in their community and impact that acting together can have. The panel will look at the project’s impact on the community and on Hub leading into a conversation around ‘the artist as lead’.


11.40-12.20PM: Session #2: ACE NPO OK Let’s Go (10 min presentation, 20 min panel, 10 min audience Q&A)
Presenter Lydia Rusling (East Lindsey District Council, South and East Lincolnshire Council Partnership) will be joined by panellists Jason Wilsher-Mills (artist) and Liz Kelleher (arts educator) to speak about new investment in the county and the long-term impact this can have on Lincolnshire with a focus on East Lindsey District Council’s (ELDC) plans and ambitions, as a new NPO in the region. The panel will consider how localities can be activated by investment in arts and culture provision.


12.20-1PM: Session #3: Barbican 2.0 (10 min presentation, 20 min panel, 10 min audience Q&A)
Presenter Sally Denton (Barbican Creative Hub) will be joined by panellists Nick Jones (Transported) and Harriet Plewis (artist) to speak about Lincoln city centre’s new creative hub, and its ambitions for the future. The panel will consider how this exciting new arts and culture resource will impact on artists, communities and young people in the city and surrounding area.


1-1.50PM: Lunch & connect
You will be asked to confirm your dietary requirements on booking.


What’s out there: Sessions after lunch will focus on what’s out there, what’s missing and what’s still to come. During the afternoon we will be joined by speakers from both Lincolnshire and the wider region.


1.50-2.30PM: Session #4: Artist Resident-sea (10 min presentation, 20 min panel, 10 min audience Q&A)
Artist Harriet Plewis will be joined by panellists Lydia Rusling (ELDC) and Kate Genever (artist) to speak about Harriet’s 2023 North Sea Observatory Artist Residency and the importance of well-funded and resourced opportunities for Lincolnshire-based artists to create and present work in the county. The panel will consider how creatives can be supported to activate spaces and places and the associated difficulties of working both within and outside of the institution.


2.30-3.10PM: Session #5: Artist-led (10 min presentation, 20 min panel, 10 min audience Q&A)
Presenter Daniel Sean Kelly (Two Queens) will be joined by panellists Oliver Ventress (artist) and Tara Munroe (Opal22) to speak about the artist-led. Two Queens is an artist-run gallery and studios in Leicester. In 2023, Two Queens became a Community Benefit Society, a form of community owned co-operative society, meaning that the organisation is now owned and controlled by the community. The panel will consider this and other models for long-term, community-led, sustainable investment in arts and culture.


3.10-3.50PM: Session #6: In with the new (10 min presentation, 20 min panel, 10 min audience Q&A)
Presenter Liz Kelleher (arts educator) will be joined by panellists Jenny Gleadell (Lincoln Museum) and Daniel Sean Kelly (Two Queens) to speak about both new artist-led activity, including the development of a new arts space in Spalding, and local authority developments helping to create a more vibrant and dynamic arts, culture and heritage offer in South & East Lincolnshire. The panel will consider how organisations and initiatives big and small can work together and alongside creatives to share resources, raise ambitions and create change.


3.50-4PM: Closing comments
Final comments from the Chair and forum hosts.


4-5PM: Opportunity to visit Hub’s current exhibition
Galleries close at 5pm.

Contemporary Visual Arts in Lincolnshire follows on from last year’s What change do you want to see through culture?forum, with a focus on ACE’s Priority and Levelling Up for Culture Places in the region – Ashfield, Bolsover, Boston, Chesterfield, East Lindsey, NE Derbyshire and Mansfield.

This event is part of a long-term project led by CVAN EM and will address some of the key findings from research into strengthening cultural and creative opportunities in these localities.

This event is supported and hosted by the Hub, Sleaford.



On booking, please share any access requirements that you would like to make us aware of or contact colette@cvaneastmidlands.co.uk. Please see access information for the Hub and this event below:

  • There is lift access to all floors.
  • There are two accessible toilets on the ground floor.
  • Seating for delegates will be provided.
  • Large-print versions of exhibition information is available, and the Hub can provide other information in large print on request.
  • Assistance dogs are welcome throughout the Hub.
  • The Hub is wheelchair and buggy friendly and baby changing facilities are available.
  • Accessible parking spaces are available in Eastgate Car Park.
  • The Hub team is always happy to help you with any access requirements.
  • The Hub is a breastfeeding friendly venue.
  • The Hub is recognised as an age friendly business.
  • This event will be audio recorded only. The recording will not be published online but will be available to delegates. This is to support a safe and supportive environment for sharing.


Getting here:

By Car: Use NG34 7DW for sat navs and follow the brown signs which are displayed on all approaches to the town. The A15 and A17 routes pass directly through Sleaford linking to the A1 within 20 minutes.

Our what3words location is noble.form.green

Parking: Eastgate car park is directly adjacent to the centre and between Monday and Saturday the first hour parking is FREE, then £1.50 for 1-3 hours and £3.50 all day. Disabled parking spaces are available. Parking is free for blue badge holders.

By Train: The Hub is a 5-minute walk from Sleaford train station. Sleaford is approximately 2 hours from London Kings Cross, 1 hour from Nottingham and 30 minutes from Lincoln Central, Spalding and Boston.

By Bus: Sleaford is locally serviced by Centrebus and Stagecoach. National Express coaches run a service between Sleaford and London and from other major cities and towns.



CVAN EM is the free-to-access Contemporary Visual Arts Network for the East Midlands. We celebrate and support arts and culture in the region, fostering an inclusive long-term future for the sector, emphasising equity and access for all arts workers.

CVAN EM nurtures regional and cross-regional connectivity and engagement through participation, working in partnership with organisations and creatives across the East Midlands to build sustainable infrastructures, present opportunities and deliver artist development activity.

Alongside 8 other regional networks we amplify voices, debate, and democratic change as part of the Contemporary Visual Arts Network England. Our strength lies in our network.

CVAN EM is hosted by New Art Exchange (NAE).


The Hub delivers a wide-ranging programme of contemporary craft, design, dance and arts experiences in Sleaford, across North Kesteven and beyond.

Home to a national centre for craft and design, the Hub’s exhibitions and shop showcase contemporary artists and makers from all over the UK. The engagement programme includes craft and dance workshops, classes, special events and performances for all people, ages and abilities. The Hub team deliver creative activities in schools, community and care settings; and work with communities & partners to coordinate participatory arts projects, festivals and public commissions.

The Hub is an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation, owned and supported by North Kesteven District Council and operated by Better – GLL; a charitable social enterprise and the UK’s largest public leisure operator.


Speaker Bios:


You can download the programme in PDF format here.
You can download presenter & panellist bios here


[1] The National Portfolio is a group of nearly a thousand arts and cultural organisations that get regular funding from ACE, which invests public money for creativity and culture in England.


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