Creative Lives is partnering with Pub is The Hub and CAMRA to launch a national Pubs Welcoming Creativity campaign. This campaign will see publicans across England opening their doors to regularly host a variety of creative activities run by local groups - anything from knitting circles to ukulele groups or poetry corners! 

We know that there are lots of creative activities that already happen in pubs, as a great way to make use of quieter nights and bring in new customers. We also know that there are many volunteer-led creative groups who have lost their regular meeting spaces during the pandemic, and will be looking for a warm space to gather, have a drink together and practise their craft as the evenings start to get darker. 

To kickstart this campaign, Creative Lives has produced a Welcoming Creativity Toolkit for Publicans. Pubs across England are now invited to self-certify as a ‘creativity-friendly venue’. The first 100 pubs to register will receive a free Welcoming Creativity pack in the post! This pack contains a ‘We welcome creativity here!’ window poster, and a ‘creativity-friendly venue’ badge for front doors and behind-the-bar. These visual aids will encourage local creative groups to start up conversations about hosting their creative activity at their local pub. The posters are customisable with contact details, opening times … or any other useful information for potential creative partnerships! 

For pubs looking for a bit more support to get started, the free online and downloadable Toolkit for publicans also includes five inspirational case studies of pubs across England already welcoming creative activity. In addition, the Toolkit contains a curated selection of some of the free downloadable Creative Lives briefings, such as: ‘Risk assessment: event management’, and ‘How to write a press release’. They’ll also find ready-made text and pictures to use on social media, to attract creative groups and to promote their activities. 

CAMRA National Chairman Nik Antona said:

"It is fantastic to see these initiatives to encourage pub-going during what could otherwise be quieter nights in our pubs. As natural hubs to their local communities, pubs are the obvious venue for creative groups. This is an incredibly difficult period for pubs which are facing a double-whammy of a cost-of-living and cost-of-goods crisis, so we'd like to encourage pubs to use this toolkit to tap into new customers. There's plenty of ways to get involved, connect with your local community and support our locals - whether that's in a local knitting circle or at a CAMRA social!"

John Longden, Chief Executive of Pub is The Hub, added:

“Many pubs are already well set up with spaces for welcoming creative groups to host their activities. These groups are often in desperate need of a warm and welcoming environment in which to get together, and meeting in a pub offers an ideal solution.”

Creative Lives is inviting creativity-friendly pubs to join our online Pubs Welcoming Creativity peer support group, for those who would like to talk through ideas in a friendly online environment. Please get in touch with [email protected] for more information. 

Click here to self-certify as a creativity-friendly venue and receive our Welcoming Creativity pack in the post, available for free to the first 100 pubs to register. 

Access our free online and downloadable Welcoming Creativity Toolkit for publicans. 

If you’d like to help spread the word about this campaign, please use the hashtag #CreativityFriendlyPub or #CreativeLivesHere. Social media messages can be shared from the @CreativeLivesCL’s account.


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