TAP Carlow HERO

Take A Part Carlow

Based in Carlow, Ireland, Take A Part Carlow uses our Arts Action Group model to understand local ambition and create community-led creative work.

Back in 2016, we held our first ever symposium on socially engaged practice in Plymouth – Social Making. It was a big, brave step for us at Take A Part to look at international models of best practice and how we could bring them to Plymouth. Social Making was about talent development and supporting Plymouth to learn from outside as well as shout about what was so wonderful about the risks that our city has taken along the way.

We presented our work at Take A Part over the last 10 years in the community of Efford as a case study, researched and co-presented with Dr Rory Shand of Manchester Metropolitan University and Efford resident and Take A Part co-founder Michael Bridgwater.

In the audience was Sinead Dowling of Carlow County Council who had travelled all the way from the Republic of Ireland to engage in our conference. She enjoyed our work and invited Take A Part CIC to partner with her and the Tullow Road community in Carlow to develop a new project for the county seat – Take A Part Carlow.

TAP Carlow
TAP Carlow2

We were very lucky as Arts Council Ireland had launched a new and innovative fund – Invitation to Collaborate – which supported local authorities and communities to collaborate to develop projects that were grass-roots and supported local ambitions. We were successful with the bid and Take A Part Carlow was born in 2017.

Take A Part Carlow follows Take A Part CIC’s Arts Action Group model of leadership and decision making. Local residents sit on a steering group with other agencies and the local authority to understand the local ambition, to fundraise and to select artists, and to support those artists to create work with local groups. To date they have worked with artists such as Micheal Fortune, Splattervan, Sile Penkert and Paul Byrne.

I just love it. Before Take A Part, I wasn’t doing much really. Now I am so busy all the time. The huge amount of stuff going on makes you even more proud to be from there.

Lisa Brookes Arts Action Group member

An example of good practice, not just in Carlow but around the country. This is true community development, where a community comes together themselves to harness their own potential.

Cllr Andrea Dalton Carlow County Council

I just love it. Before Take A Part, I wasn’t doing much really. Now I am so busy all the time. The huge amount of stuff going on makes you even more proud to be from there.

Lisa Brookes Arts Action Group member

An example of good practice, not just in Carlow but around the country. This is true community development, where a community comes together themselves to harness their own potential.

Cllr Andrea Dalton Carlow County Council

Take A Part Carlow is a more Irish version of Take A Part (naturally) - there is more focus on folklore, traditions, dance and music for example - but it is always presented in a new and engaging way.

Although only new, they are making great inroads and looking towards the long-term sustainability of the practice. They recently were awarded another round of Invitation to Collaborate funding. Take A Part Carlow came to Social Making 2018 to present and they were case studied at Places Matter, Arts Council Ireland’s own conference about place making in ROI. We are continuing to support them to develop.