Three local creative projects have benefitted from the first round of a new grants scheme aimed at reinvigorating and supporting arts and culture in the area.

Award winning writer Laura Fyfe from Stirling has been awarded £2235 by Scene Stirling to set up Write Out of Town: a pilot project celebrating Stirling’s remarkable surroundings, people and history through written and spoken word. The six-week online scheme will include five creative writing workshops for emerging writers, culminating in a live virtual performance on Zoom.The series will be run by Laura in collaboration with the University of Stirling, Stirling Ghost Walk, The Stirling Smith’s Writer in Residence, Sonnet Youth, Creative Stirling and Stirling Library Services.

Laura said: “We’re hoping to attract aspiring writers from all over Stirlingshire, particularly those living rurally or with caring responsibilities who might find attending in-person workshops difficult. Ultimately, we hope the project will connect local writers and help establish a vibrant, supportive and sustainable creative community.”

Meanwhile two micro grants have also been awarded to the following local artists:

  • £500 to visual artist Lesley McDermott to develop a series of large-scale textile artworks inspired by the interior and architecture of Bannockburn House, which will be displayed in a digital showcase in November 2020.

  • £490 to jewellery maker Rebecca Wilson (pictured above) to develop her online presence in response to the closure of galleries and the widespread cancellation of events. Rebecca will also work with a photographer to create a photo story of her work.

Grant decisions are made by the city’s cultural partners.

Kevin Harrison, Scene Stirling Project Manager said: “This has been an incredibly difficult year for arts and culture. These grants will go some way to aiding local recovery from Covid-19, allowing artists to continue their practice in a challenging economic climate and reconnecting our communities through arts and culture at a time when we need it most.”

Scene Stirling is funded by Stirling Council and The National Lottery through Creative Scotland, as part of Creative Scotland’s Place Partnership. In 2016, Creative Scotland awarded £200,000 of National Lottery funds, with additional funding and resources from local partners. The partnership was created to encourage and support local organisations to work together in the community to strengthen creative development and widen access to creative activity in the area.

Jenny Tipton, Place, Partnerships and Communities Officer for Creative Scotland, said: The launch of the Scene Stirling grant scheme has enabled artists to access support quickly and at a time of increased need. It is encouraging to see the way in which artists are adapting their practices in these difficult times, and we look forward to seeing further awards for creative practitioners in Stirling in the coming months. It is thanks to The National Lottery who are helping to make these awards possible.”

Convener of the Stirling Council’s Community Planning and Regeneration Committee, Councillor Chris Kane added: “I am delighted that these local artists are receiving this funding which will help amplify their unique creativity, allowing them to innovate in their own special way and create work that will be of interest to people throughout Stirling and beyond.”

The grants have also been welcomed by Vice Convener, Councillor Scott Farmer: “These have been very challenging times for arts and culture, which play such an important role in communities throughout Stirling, and these grants will be a real help to some of our talented local artists, helping turn their innovative ideas into reality.”

The deadline for the next round of Open Grants (up to £2500 for projects that encourage collaboration and partnership) is Friday 20 November 2020. Applications for micro grants of up to £500 will remain open until March 2021.

 For further information on the grants available and to apply, visit: www.scenestirling.com

 For support with your application contact hello@scenestirling.com