Proud East MArshian magazine:
I was driving home in the dark last night and saw several houses with flashing lights, trees and other festive decorations. It was November 19th yesterday and in previous years I might have thought wow, they’re keen, that’s a bit early! Not this year. This year, I thought wow, look at that, light in the darkness, hope at a bleak time. I’ve seen a lot of comments on social media about these early decorations - some quite sneery, but more and more that celebrate the arrival of light, cheer and fun.
We all know it’s been an extraordinary year, full of worry and fear and loss. Everyone has suffered because of Covid and lockdown restrictions, people are tired and in real need of some winter cheer. Here at the Sun and Moon Festival, we applaud all the early trees, lights, dancing Santas and the rest of it. We stand with you and salute cheerfulness and attempts to bring the light into the darkness
- let’s leave it all up till February!
Looking back over this year we’ve faced a lot of challenges as we’ve tried to keep projects going and offer activities for our community. I am immensely proud of everyone in the team who has come up with fabulous ideas to keep everyone creative and there have been so many highlights. I have especially enjoyed getting to know some of our residents better and taking projects to them to complete at
home. Most recently, we’ve distributed 24 lantern making kits and the pictures and feedback about those have been brilliant.
Obviously, we’ve had to cancel, postpone or change lots of activity
this year. We have learnt so much and we are determined to bring
to life lots of creative activity for the spring.
In the meantime, we wish you all a very safe and happy Christmas,
however you celebrate, and we look forward to seeing everyone
again, when we can.
With Love and Light
REMAKe is our name for our community arts group and it stands for
Revolutionary East Marsh Arts Kollective.
‘Revolutionary’, eh? Big claim! But, the word is important to us because it means ‘involving or causing a complete or dramatic change’ and it is that kind of change that is needed on our East Marsh – we want to change ways of thinking, ways of Being, ways of doing. We want people to look around at their lives here and say ‘This is Home’, I’m proud to live here,
I’m a Proud East Marshian!
So, what’s the ‘Festival’ about? First of all, it’s part of a new,
£4million national funding programme called
‘Creative Civic Change’ (more here). Fourteen communities
across England are set to transform their local areas as part of
the programme. Over the next three years, these communities will
take the lead and use creativity to generate meaningful
civic change in their area.
Representing Grimsby and the East Marsh, REMAKe will use our grant to run four big celebratory events that will showcase local artists, crafters and makers. We will build local networks through taster courses and creative visits focusing on arts and crafts, performing arts, words and multimedia.
It’s telling stories about you and about the East Marsh. And it’s learning to use cameras and videos to truly see and show our East Marsh and share with the whole world – because we are proud of our neighbourhood.
For three years we will be setting up and guiding independent and cooperative art, craft, writing, performance, media and maker groups that will make positive change happen around our East Marsh. Above all we are challenging people to stop being used to the way things are, to not accept it, to imagine a different, a better world.
Whatever your relationship with the East Marsh: resident, worker, visitor, friend or family, you are welcome to come and share in this unique festival.
The festival plan works backwards from four big events in Year 3, evenly spaced through the year along equinox and solstice markers, intended to offer a big splash showcase for the community groups of artists, crafters and makers. Above all, we want people to look around at the East Marsh and their lives here and say
I’m a Proud East Marshian!