Make It More Middlesbrough

Make it More Middlesbrough is a creative development programme led by Navigator North between April 2023 to April 2024 to empower communities, groups and volunteers to connect in positive ways to enhance wellbeing, improve social cohesion, co-create events and increase a sense of pride in Middlesbrough and its heritage. It follows on from the success of the cultural programme – Celebrating Hidden Middlesbrough as part of Historic England and Middlesbrough Council’s High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) between 2021 and 2023.

The programme is supported by Historic England and National Lottery Heritage Fund with Know Your Neighbourhood funding.

Co-ordinated programme of support, training and opportunities for volunteer led community action in the HSHAZ. Connecting with and building on existing volunteer networks. Training opportunities and more informal skill share sessions support identified training needs with volunteers, partners and programme participants. Creating more accessible ways to visually represent volunteers and good practice in volunteering.

Community hub and programmed activities
The programme supports access to creative spaces and places within Middlesbrough’s high street for audiences and participants. This includes the continued use of the former pub The Masham as a community hub and creative space, with a programme of exhibitions and events linking the Make It More Middlesbrough activities. Other programmed activities have and will take place in the HSHAZ and its public realm spaces, including seasonal events.

Pride of Place small grants
With an open call available for local interest groups, volunteer led initiatives and creatives to devise and deliver their own projects in Spring 2024. The aim is for the grants to support creative activities that offer opportunities for people to reconnect with their town centre, share memories and ideas, develop skills, take collective action to improve pride of place and connect with each other. Communities are invited to shape their own projects and events.

Grant support includes;

  • Focused advice and guidance from Navigator North and project mentors
  • Help to identify venues and spaces to carry out grant funded activities in the town centre. These include but are not exclusive to, Navigator North’s own creative spaces including The Masham, Unit 7 Hillstreet Shopping Centre and Dundas House
  • Access to expertise, knowledge, networks and resources through the Make It More Middlesbrough programme and partners
  • Project budget up to £800.

All photographs above by Rachel Deakin