Examples by what we do:
Planning & Strategy
Research & Evaluation
Workshops & Training
Heritage Lottery Fund Projects
Examples by sector:
Museums and heritage
Zoos and aquariums
Outdoor and nature reserves
The Norfolk and Norwich Festival Bridge
Inventing a Listening Lab to Bring Heritage, Arts, and Education Organisations TogetherIn a nutshell
Tasked with bringing connection and collaboration to the sometimes disparate worlds of arts, heritage, and education,A Different View planned an event to create a space where members of these communities could feel free to share their stories, concerns, and ideas for the future. We hosted something we called a Listening Lab, an open sharing event, where invitees from organisations across Norfolk could meet and start these conversations.
A bit about The Norfolk and Norwich Festival Bridge
The Norfolk and Norwich Festival Bridge exists to connect young people with the arts, culture, and heritage, to bridge the gap that often inhibits this connection. Funded by Arts Council England, the Bridge is making a huge difference in the way young people experience and participate in their cultural surroundings in the region.
How we got involved
We were commissioned by the Norfolk and Norwich Festival Bridge to create an event for members of the heritage, arts, and education networks in East Anglia, an event that would provide a catalyst for conversations and collaborations now and in the future.
We got to work planning a special kind of event; we knew a traditional conference or networking social wouldn’t cut it. So we invented a new one – a “Listening Lab.”
In Aylsham Heritage Centre, in the grounds of Aylsham’s Parish church, we brought together a group of invitees, from headteachers to the natural environment to heritage providers to arts innovators. We heard how education charity Camouflaged Learning is creating an alternative to traditional learning. We heard from Reverend Beane of Aylsham Church how he has given the church a new life with arts and heritage, making it an inviting, community space. We heard from Sarah Witcomb of the Norfolk and Norwich Festival how a tower of cardboard boxes shows what can happen when people start feeling able to join in. And we heard all about the scope of the new curriculum from headteacher at artsy Reepham Primary School, Miriam Jones. Then we debated, we chatted over tea, we played around with ideas.
The Listening Lab brought participants into contact with different points of view, case studies, concerns, and, most importantly, ideas for how to capitalize on the intersections between their organisations.
The first ever Norfolk and Norwich Festival Bridge Listening Lab had a real buzz about it, and when the day was done, the participants came away with a sense of excitement for how their organisation could be part of a collaborative network. “What can we do next?” become a popular question, and sums up the final note of the event. Take a look at the Storify narrative we compiled to celebrate what we learned from the day.
And next steps are already being embarked on by the Listening Lab participants. A new relationship is forming between Reepham Primary School and Camouflaged Learning; the team at Camouflaged Learning has also met with Norfolk Trails to plan a new Young Roots project; and The Broads Authority and NNF Bridge are also keen to start building an alliance.
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