START: Thurrock

About Us 

Our new Creative People and Places (CPP) programme is START: Thurrock (Stronger Together Arts) through which our community will take the lead in creating a new story for Thurrock.  START will energise our people in the forging of a confident new arts-led narrative post pandemic.  With control held locally through our STARTer resident panels and inspired by our motto ‘By Thames to all peoples of the world’, we will form, write, tell and review our story over the next decade.   

Hosted by Tilbury on the Thames Trust as lead organisation with support from Thurrock Council, Thurrock Lifestyle Solutions CIC, Thurrock CVS and the Royal Opera House as ‘custodians not controllers’, we cannot wait to start cultivating, showcasing and growing world class creativity in the heart of our communities! 

About Creative People and Places 

Creative People and Places is a national action learning programme funded by Arts Council England.  It’s about more people taking the lead in choosing, creating and taking part in brilliant art experiences in the places where they live.  It focuses on parts of the country where involvement in arts and culture is significantly below the national average.  Creative People and Places programmes cover 56 local authority areas, including 11 entirely new areas announced in December 2021 – including Thurrock.

You can read more about the project 'here'


About the START: Thurrock CPP Core Consortium:

Tilbury on the Thames Trust (TTT) is the lead organisation for START. Initiated by local people in 2015, TTT now works closely with the Port of Tilbury, co-designing the future of Tilbury Cruise Terminal to blend community and commercial use.  TTT is financially backed by the Port of Tilbury, which will extend corporate back-office functions to START CPP in-kind.  We believe inclusion of a CPP within the Corporate Social Responsibility programme of a high-profile commercial partner is unique, potentially yielding fascinating lessons for national sector development and peer learning.

Thurrock CVS (Community and Voluntary Services) supports local organisations and community groups in Thurrock by working behind the scenes to ensure the long-term future of essential services delivered by the voluntary sector. Much of the work that TCVS does focuses on support, development work, capacity building, liaison, strategic partnerships, representation and advocacy. 

Royal Opera House (ROH) represents our arts sector on the Core Consortium, providing recognised expertise in establishing cultural engagement programmes within Thurrock.  The Learning and Participation Team will support START on behalf of ROH, supporting our core consortium to translate the artistic excellence and principles behind the Thurrock Trailblazer Cultural Catalogue into the START ‘Table of Contents’. 

Thurrock Lifestyle Solutions (TLS) CIC services Thurrock’s disabled community via inclusion and offers invaluable experience in facilitating empowerment to shape service provision; 100% of their board identify as disabled.  TLS also provides recognised expertise in social enterprise, having been listed 1st on the NatWest SE100 index for the East of England.  TLS owns 5 residential properties, minibuses, an office and 7 locality buildings covering all Thurrock, supporting over 250 disabled people with 135 local support staff.  START CPP will benefit from this infrastructure to engage disabled people, building on the connections already engaged.  

Thurrock Council will link our CPP to Thurrock’s place-making programme including major regeneration initiatives such as Purfleet Media Village, borough cultural services including the library, museum and theatre, public health and wellbeing agendas, and regional initiatives such as the South East Creative Economy Network, Thames Estuary Production Corridor and the Towns Fund.  This includes tying our CPP development to a collectively owned arts, culture and heritage strategy.