22nd March 2021 Town Improvements Report 5.9

Poetry Pin Commission

Purpose of Report
To seek funding for the commissioning of an external Poetry project

In a time when we must adapt to long term life with COVID restrictions, The Princess needs to reconnect, non-traditionally, with audiences and develop new whilst maintaining relevance. COVID 19 has meant for an extended period of time we have been unable to link with a number of demographics. It is also the case that The Princess has previously not accessed or catered for the tourists who arrive locally.
By offering outside creative and cultural activities we can introduce The Princess to new audiences and revitalise old connections.
The Poetry Pin provides a COVID secure and naturally socially distanced system to engage with the environment and community of Burnham on Sea and Highbridge without entering buildings and without direct contact with other people. A similar idea to geocaching, participants geotag words and responses to locations (eg Apex park, The Princess, The Pavilion), and for these words to be only accessible in that same specific location through the user’s mobile phones. The activity offers specific health benefits including outdoor physical engagement – getting out and active – new opportunities to interact and create digital art – creative family opportunity.
An Example: The Tarka Trail (2019) – Peddling Poetry Project was able to geotag over 300 poems along a public cycle path without any signage or physical intervention in the landscape. The project raised awareness with locals and visitors to connect with their landscape and the North Devon Biosphere.
Over the 4 months of the project there were approximately 1200 participants.

Financial implications
£1200 for set up and 6 months’ web rental
£750 3 x Workshop sessions @ £250 per day (remote delivery is possible and could include schools)
£430 materials and marketing
£120 contingency

Total £2500

Policy implications
Corporate Plan: 2 Culture and Community, 3 Economic Development and Tourism, 4 Healthy and Safe Environment.

I would like to recommend we offer this project over the 6-month period (May – October 2021) Government guidelines allowing.
The Poetry Pin will be a bespoke project specific to Burnham on Sea, Highbridge and The Princess, with a local theme (TBD).

 To engage new audiences with creative activities within our Towns
 To encourage tourists to explore our Towns and seascapes
 To reconnect with Princess audiences and our community

Author: Beccy Armory
Title: Business Development Officer

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