28-31 August 2014

Arts Council Funding Secured for Tall Ships Arts Programme

The Tall Ships Big Art and Storytelling Tall Ships Project has been awarded funding from The Arts Council and local arts funding body FEAST. Following the positive launch of the children’s competition element in April, the funding means that the entire proposed Arts Programme leading up to and during the Tall Ships Regatta can now be delivered. 

John Frankland Creative Producer for the project explained, “This recognition for the creative value of the project means that we can do so much more and deliver some exciting outcomes for the children who engage with the project and the visitors who come to see these fabulous ships.” 

One of the immediate effects is that the project has been able to award five bursaries to alumni creative writing students, in conjunction with Falmouth University. These new writers beginning their careers in Cornwall have already spent some time writing their interpretation of John Dyer’s painting celebrating the 2014 Tall Ships Regatta in Falmouth.  Their work will be added to that of professional writers and will be available to be view online at www.johndyergallery.co.uk/tallships 

Alumni will also support the project workshops which are being provided free to schools across Cornwall, allowing children to gain a creative insight into how they can complete their own writing. Kirsty Davies, UK Recruitment & Outreach Coordinator for Falmouth University said, “It’s a brilliant opportunity for local pupils to benefit from the expertise of up-and-coming writers. The workshops will be led by recent graduates who are really passionate about their craft and are eager to impart their insight to local schools.” 

Suzie Cunliffe, one of the five graduates engaged with the project comments “Having the tall ships visit Falmouth is such a momentous occasion and as a writer, working and living in Cornwall, I am tremendously proud to be able to contribute to the creative tour de force of creativity being generated around the event by this project. John’s painting conveys an amazing sense of celebration and is incredibly detailed and alive with characters and inspirations for stories. I have started work on my interpretation and I am excited too about helping groups of children from across Cornwall to explore their reactions and craft their own tall tales.” 

Falmouth Art Gallery has been inundated with responses from local schools to take part in these workshops, with some schools arranging for every child to participate. “This level of response endorses what a huge creative offer this project is for children to engage with, they are being encouraged not only to paint but to write stories, poems and even complete a play!” said Henrietta Boex, Director of Falmouth Art Gallery. 

Maxwell Golden, a professional hip-hop poet who has interpreted the painting with his own poem, has been engaged to give a series of workshops in Cornwall for local children in their own schools. Frankland added, “In Max’s most recent show ‘Country Boy’s Struggle’ he plays forty different characters.  He will inspire all those children who get the opportunity to work with him. A big thanks to The Arts Council and FEAST for the funding that means this can happen.” 

Artist in Residence John Dyer added “I am absolutely thrilled that my creative work and the work of The John Dyer Gallery have helped to secure this significant arts funding for The BIG Art & Storytelling Tall Ships project. It is a wonderful feeling to be able to support and work alongside the creative talents of actors & writers and to be able to award bursaries to up and coming writers from Falmouth University. It is exactly how we imagined the project would work and dreams do come true.” 

The funding also allows Shop for Theatre to be brought to life for the Regatta. Shop for Theatre brings performances of new writing into small and intimate spaces, has enjoyed much success in recent years, appearing at a number of festivals including the Fal River Festival and the 2008 Tall Ships Regatta. 

Shop for Theatre writer in residence Paul Farmer will be involved in this year’s Tall Ships event, bringing existing work and material produced during the project to local venues. Some lucky pupils will even have their stories heard in shops throughout the town. 

For more information about the Big Art and Storytelling Project please visit


All the essential information for the Regatta can be found on

www.falmouthtallships.co.uk, join us on Facebook ‘Tall Ships Falmouth 2014’ or follow us on Twitter@tallships_2014