Opening the Treasure Chest

A two-part creative workshop for people with learning disabilities, to explore loss and bereavement.


The workshop sessions will take place on Thursday March 21st and Thursday April 18th, between 1.30pm and 4pm.


The venue is The Hive, 5 Belmont, Shrewsbury SY1 1TE.


In a safe and supportive environment, using movement, dance, and voice, we will invite participants to embrace and dance with their memories, and move forward with a heart full of treasure.


Both workshop sessions will be led by Ray Jacobs, a movement practitioner with a wealth of experience in leading creative inclusive workshops.


The workshop will include a sharing of 'The Sea Reminds Me’, a moving short film about a learning disabled man’s quest to find treasure of the heart.


The cost, which includes workshop (both sessions) and refreshments, is £10.


Advance booking is essential .For further information please contact Ray Jacobs on 01743 792052 or email


To book a place please fill in the form, attached and send to:


Ray Jacobs, Associate Artist, Disability Arts in Shropshire, The Hive,
5 Belmont, Shrewsbury SY1 1TE


Once we have received your booking form we will contact you to confirm your place.


This workshop is managed by Fig Tree Industries Limited and funded by Shropshire County Council Local Joint Committee.


Disability Positive - Hereforshire - A whole week of events

A number of Herefordshire organisations and individuals have come together to mark International Day of Disabled People, Disability History Month, and Carers' Rights Day. Rolled into one, we are called Disability Positive.


The objective of Disability Positive is to improve the lives of disabled people in Herefordshire by:
• Providing an opportunity for disabled people to showcase their skills
• Raising awareness of the inequality still experienced by many disabled
• Providing information to disabled and non-disabled people
Our ultimate goal is to improve the participation of disabled people in all
aspects of society.

For more information

Audio Description Day 15th September at Enginuity

The Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust and Royal National Institute of Blind People RNIB are working together on a new project funded by Arts Council England. The project aims to make art more accessible for blind and partially sighted visitors, as part of a legacy project from the London 2012 Games and starts with a special Audio Description Day on 15 September at the Ironbridge Gorge Museum's CORE digital generative exhibition.


CORE is a giant installation at Enginuity, one of the ten Ironbridge Gorge Museums in Shropshire by Kurt Hentschläger. It is a digital generative exhibition that features humanoid bodies floating in a weightless environment, projected onto five giant screens running along a 33m former industrial Engine Shop. The exhibition, that is a part of the London 2012 Festival, also features music and as each body moves, a unique musical note can be heard, meaning that the more animated the bodies become, the louder the 'music’ becomes.

Zoe Partington-Sollinger, Arts Development Officer for RNIB, explains. "We will be using Audio Describers to explain to blind and partially sighted visitors what is happening on the screens and then leave them to enjoy the exhibition on their own. On a recent visit with a blind colleague he said it was the most powerful piece of art he had ever seen. We are piloting audio description on 15th September to learn how we can adapt established techniques of audio description to digital art in order to roll out the ideas to other museums and arts venues.”

The project is part of a larger plan to train up dozens of volunteer Audio Describer across the West Midlands, who can then use their skills to describe any arts event to blind and partially sighted visitors. The training will take place later in the year using the Ironbridge Gorge Museums 10 museums as a training base.

Anyone interested in attending the Audio Description Day on Saturday 15th September 2012 at Enginuity in Ironbridge or becoming an Audio Describer should contact Zoe Partington-Sollinger by email or call 01952 433424.

At last an easy way to complain about inaccessible websites - start reporting now!

An ingenious new campaign called Fix the Web has been launched this week to tackle the problem of inaccessible websites on a massive scale. Fix the Web is an initiative of Citizens Online, a national charity that campaigns for internet access for all.

The internet has been a liberating force in the lives of many disabled people, opening up a wonderful new world of communication, ideas and networks.  In theory, it should have created a level playing field.
Unfortunately, millions of disabled and older people are excluded from easily navigating their way around the web.  To compound the problem, it is often difficult to complain about the offending sites. Fix the Web ( ) has been launched to provide a quick and easy way for people to make complaints - as well as to introduce a volunteer-led process for those complaints to be reported back to website owners to get fixed.
The reporting process for a disabled person will take less than a minute and is easily done through a form on the site: , via twitter (#fixtheweb #fail, url and the problem) or by emailing There will also be a toolbar for browsers developed by Southampton University, which includes a reporting button.
The full press release can be seen on the Fix the Web blog.

Tanya Raabe on this week's Culture Show

Former Visual Arts Manager at DASH, and one of the UK's leading Disabled Visual Artists, Tanya will be appearing with the inimitable Mat Fraser at 7pm BBC2 18th November 2010.


Be sure to watch this weeks - The Culture Show, BBC2, 7pm, 18th November.

Featuring an interview with and live portrait made by Tanya Raabe of Mat Fraser posing nude as part of this years DaDa International Festival 10.


O2 Think Big Programme

Telecoms company O2 is offering £5 million to young people aged 13-25 across the UK to support a project of their choice in their local community. Successful applicants will receive a cash grant of £300, together with training and support to help them make the most of it.

The Think Big programme will also offer successful applicants the opportunity to re-apply for a further £2,500 cash for the project.

Broseley Camera Club

Broseley Camera Club is a small informal group of people who meet once a month to display their photographs and share experiences. There is no membership fee, but members are asked to pay £1.50 each at meetings which they do attend, to defray room hire costs.

We do not normally have formal speakers at meetings.  Instead, during the winter months, we have short Focus Point talks or hands on sessions on varying aspects and techniques of photography.  In summer we try to get out and about on field trips, weather permitting, and in July we usually hold a photographic treasure hunt. 
One of our aims is to encourage members to ‘go out and shoot’ and to this end we hold both monthly and quarterly competitions, the subjects for which are chosen by ballot. 
Entries are judged by the members and the winning entries are discussed afterwards with regard to technical expertise and  interpretation of subject.  Both film and digital images are allowed.
The Club actively encourages beginners and the not-so-confident and all ages are welcome.    Above all, we are keen to help other people enjoy their photography and members are always willing to give advice and answer questions.
The Club usually meets on the last Monday of each month, at 7.30 pm in Broseley Library, Bridgnorth Road, Broseley.

If you are interested in joining, please contact Jan Lancaster, tel: 01952 884766 or email: or visit our website

Revealing Culture - HeadOn

Visual disabled artist Tanya Raabe has been awarded a Grant for the Arts to create 'Revealing Culture:HeadOn', a research/artwork portraying identity, disability culture and the Nude. Tanya will be delving into public art collections on display in Tate Liverpool and Tate Modern to devise a visionary portrait of disability culture, while creating ten new portraits of disabled cultural figures, past present and future. The sittings for these portraits are open to the public to watch and question both the artist and the sitter the project.


Live portraits take place at Tate Modern through the first half of 2010 featuring a range of prominent figures within the disability world. Sophie Morgan, Fashion Model and runner up in the, television reality show 'The Missing Model' will pose on the 29 January. Deborah Wilkinson, creative producer of Reality Productions, will come to Tate Modern on 15 February. The final sitter will be Baroness Campbell, of Surbiton, D.B.E who is an active Crossbench Peer in the House of Lords and has developed a changing disability culture in terms of Human Rights and Independent Living, campaigning for 'Living with Dignity' and the right to live as we choose.

Additional Sitters include: Sir Bert Massie CBE former chair of the Disability Rights Commission, has been appointed as the new Commissioner for the Compact, the agreement that strives to develop links between public, voluntary and community organizations. Dr Sonali Shah, social scientist, Leeds University, Deborah Wilkinson, creative producer of Reality Productions; Michele Taylor, Arts Consultant; Garry Robson Artistic Director of Fittings Multimedia Arts Sir William Laurence: is the Great Great Grandfather of Sergeant Surgeon to Queen Victoria and Granted a Baronetcy in 1867 of Ealing Park.; The peoples choice!: this will be a portrait chosen by the public using social networks, BBC Ouch!, Facebook, Flicker.

For further information please visit or the blog at

Another Blow To Disabled Artists

A little over a year since the Scottish Arts Council (SAC) announced its plan to consolidate and develop Disability Arts in Scotland with its excellent "Ignite" one off funding programme, yet before the programme has actually finished we learn that the SAC Equalities Department is being dissolved and that the Arts and Disability Post (Robert Gale's job) is to be lost.


We all suspected that as a result of recent financial turmoil equality would take a hit, but this is nothing short of nuclear.

This decision by SAC, made without consultation, to close this department and let Robert go, sends on a big clear signal to arts and cultural organisations in Scotland and beyond.

It's going to be difficult for the Council to make an influential argument for inclusion, disability arts and equality in general, if it's seen to be turning its back on these issues.

And it's going to be easier for those arts organisations that deny how important being equal and inclusive is, to argue that they have neither the capacity nor the resources to become so.

We just hope that disabled people and disabled artists won't miss out because of this step, and that it won't leave a gaping hole in Scottish culture where there could and should have been a mountain.