Together Again

March to December 2021

Together Again helps residents in North Shields and Wallsend the chance to explore, reconnect and shape the future of their town. The project builds on our 'Town Common Festival'.

Image credit: Josie Brookes illustrating conversations (2021). Photo by Helix Arts.
Josie Brooks creates a live illustration as part of a creative conversation (2021) Photo by Elizabeth Kane Creative Producer on behalf of Helix Arts ©



Together Again will give people space to think creatively about their connection with North Shields and Wallsend. Residents are also encouraged to share their hopes and vision for the high streets and town centres.

Artists Jay Sykes, Alizon Bennet and Sofia Barton are leading a range of exciting experiences working alongside local organisations. Staff and volunteers from Helix Arts will continue gathering insights across both towns through community listening.

Creative Producer Elizabeth Kane says:

“Together Again is happening at a crucial moment for our communities. With talk of ‘the new normal’ fading as pandemic restrictions lift, Together Again gives people the chance to visualise a fairer, greener and more creative future. What should the high street could become? How our lives can be made better by reimagining services? In essence, what should our town look, feel and work like.”

Northumberland Square North Shields

Northumberland Square, North Shields.

Together Again will:

  • Enable artists and producers to create collaborative experiences improving people’s confidence talking to those in power. In other words support the development of participants social agency.
  • Engage people who have fewer opportunities to take part in creative activities. Specifically ‘Together Again’ will reach carers, families and those more likely to experience racism.
  • Engage the wider community through a social media campaign promoting togetherness across North Shields and Wallsend.
  • Employing three artists and support he development of volunteers skills.
  • Renew people’s view of ‘spaces’ in North Shields and Wallsend and their sense of belonging and connection.

What's happening?

Together again will give many different people the opportunity to take part.

Children’s Making Sessions

Alizon Bennet is reaching children and families helping them explore their connection to their town. She will lead child friendly workshops in North Shields and Wallsend branch libraries. The young artists will be supported to create painted blocks. These colourful sculptures will allow them to explore their ideas about what their town and high street should look like and do. These boxes will be exhibited in empty spaces bring empty or neglected spaces to life. Details of how to book onto these workshops are coming soon. Priority places will be offered to children with caring responsibilities.

The Voices of Wallsend and North Shields

Jay Sykes invites residents of North Shields and Wallsend to share their voice. You can take part remotely or in person. Learning from the pandemic and our experience of reaching people online if you would like to take part from your own home you can (with minimal equipment).

Have your say from Home…

Record an audio message on your smartphone. Your message should not last longer than five minutes.

On your recording please:

  • Introduce yourself e.g. I’m John from Wallsend. I’ve lived here for 45 years and am a decorator.
  • Take a moment to talk about one or more of these questions: Where do you call home? / How do you feel about Wallsend/North Shields today? / What do you love about Wallsend/North Shields? / What frustrates you about Wallsend/North Shields? / What should change about Wallsend/North Shields? / How do you spend time in our local green spaces? /What is your hidden gem in Wallsend/North Shields?
  • Send your recordings to [email protected] with the title ‘Together Again My Voice’.

By emailing, you grant Helix Arts permission to use your recording to create a playlist and sound piece that will be shared publicly.

Prefer to talk in person? Jay will be collecting some field recordings on high streets and green spaces across Wallsend and North Shields. Ensure you follow Helix Arts on Facebook and Twitter to find out where you can meet Jay.

Home Illustrated

Sofia Barton is working with Walking With. Sofia will guide service users to explore their emerging connection to Wallsend and surrounding areas.

Walking With was set up over 20 years ago to welcome, befriend and support refugees, asylum seekers and others in need in the local and wider community, seeking to embrace the borough of North Tyneside.

Sofia’s illustration sessions will compliment Walking Withs regular happy to chat sessions. Her workshops will provide another safe space for people to share their experience and practice their conversational language skills.

Enjoy Pop Up Artworks in Wallsend and North Shields

Together Again will culminate with pop up exhibits and interventions across both towns in spaces identified by participants.

Thanks to our Project Funders

‘Together Again’ is funded by the Co-op Foundation’s ‘Space to Connect’ fund.

This fund supports exploring how we can make better use of our community space to meet local challenges. ‘Together Again’ is an Enhance project. Enhance projects are for organisations already using a community space in an innovative and creative way, and you want to expand activities and embed sustainable ways of working to build a more secure future.

The Co-op Foundation is shaped by values of equality and equity, social responsibility, democracy, and honesty and openness.

For further information please contact Elizabeth Kane (She/Her), Creative Producer.