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Creativity blossoming in Nottingham community woodland

A project in Nottingham is set to help transform a community woodland into a creative space for exploration, discovery and wonder, with support from Arts Council England.

Wonder Woods, supported by £97,500 of National Lottery money, will see The Toy Library and Nonsuch collaborate to create a new outdoor space for drama, visual and performance arts and creative media in Bulwell’s Barkers Wood.

Working with young people and families, The Toy Library regularly use the ten-acre woodland as a place for Forest Schools and outdoor play. However, when the team met with Nonsuch last year, they felt more could be done for local people and the wider community if they joined forces.

Wonder Woods will include 12-month programme, offering local people the chance to get outside and involved with festivals, outdoor immersive theatre, work with local schools, children and families, and projects with older residents.

Peter Knott, Area Director for Arts Council England, yesterday said:

“Arts and culture play a vital role in making the places we live vibrant and exciting and we’re delighted to be investing in Wonder Woods, helping children, families and communities to develop, grow and create together.

“We’re pleased that our funding from the National Lottery is going to enable more people in Bulwell and beyond to access and be inspired by extraordinary arts and culture, as the community woodlands comes alive with creativity.”

Izzy Bradley, Wonder Woods Programme Lead at Nonsuch yesterday said:

''We are so excited to have the recognition and support from Arts Council to develop our concept of Wonder Woods in partnership with The Toy Library. We have huge aspirations for this project, which will see Barkers Wood transformed into an immersive arts destination for not just the local families, communities of Bulwell and Nottingham but audiences across England.”

Steve Parkinson, Service Director at The Toy Library, yesterday said:

“Our work with children over many generations has shown us that we all begin life as artists, interacting and learning through play and creative experimentation. We are delighted to be able to bring this exciting programme of arts and activity here not only for local people, but also to welcome those from further afield to come and see what a wonderful space Barkers Wood is for imagination, inspiration, enchantment and playful enjoyment.”


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