CoolTan Arts were awarded a grant of £2,500 by the Bermondsey Square Community Fund.
CoolTan Arts is a multi-award-winning, participant-led arts organization based in Southwark. They work with people with mental-distress to de-stigmatise mental-health, promote mental-wellbeing, facilitate public engagement and support people in making a positive contribution to society through creative inclusion. They’re mission is to inspire wellbeing, rehabilitation and recovery through the arts, empowering participants to achieve their full potential.
About the Project
With a team of five volunteers, the CoolSE1 project researched the history, activities, places of interest and the people associated with Bermondsey Square.
The team found out about the area’s Roman and Saxon past and the rise and abolition of the Abbey. Then Bermondsey’s transformation from rural market gardens to industrial powerhouse. And finally, the social changes and events of the 20th Century that shaped the area. CoolSE1 used this information to create a series of six fact-filled walks around Bermondsey Square and SE1. The six walks were:
- Public Artworks of SE1
- The Salters: Bermondsey Health Pioneers
- Lost Cinemas & Music Halls of Bermondsey
- Bermondsey Blitz
- Seeds of Change: Bermondsey’s Radical Influencers
- Steele & Caine
The team learnt a number of skills when managing the project which included:
- risk-assessing the routes to ensure accessibility
- social media and publicity skills through the creation of a blog, running a Twitter account and associated apps
- creating and distributing promotional materials
- leading and presenting the walks
Over the 12 walks, the team presented to 94 walkers.
At the end of the project, some of the volunteers and all the research was transferred to CoolTan Arts’ Southwark Hidden Stories project.
About Bermondsey Square Community Fund
The Bermondsey Square Trust collects money from the occupiers and owners of Bermondsey Square through the occupiers’ leases and grants awards for ‘The marketing animation and promotion of the Bermondsey Square Estate and making a positive contribution to the wider neighbourhood and community of Bermondsey.’About the Community Fund