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 Map with markers showing where CCC projects took place across the country. ReMake in Grimsby is in the north east and highlighted with a pink marker.ReMake is based in the East Marsh area of Grimsby. The East Marsh was created during Grimsby’s boom time, when the fishing industry reached its peak and the town’s population rapidly expanded. It is now suffering multiple forms of deprivation, but there is hope from East Marsh United, an organisation intent on tackling the big issues of housing, poverty and lack of aspiration.

About the project

Our project was born one evening around a kitchen table where a group of friends met to discuss their hopes and dreams for the East Marsh. The ideas became more ambitious as the evening progressed. We were fired up, with no funding at that point, but determined to make change happen and determined to change the town’s perception of the East Marsh.

We have delivered a varied and exciting range of activities to raise aspirations, increase the pride people have in their local area and to help people feel happy and confident with a strong sense of belonging.

This project has changed my practice, flipped it on its head.  Working at grassroots with community-led ideas has led to exciting and dynamic working with local people fully engaged and having ownership of the work.”

How creativity changed our community

Our activities were organised through four artistic areas: Arts and Crafts, Writing, Drama and Media, all of which were driven by the community. Artists worked with the needs and wants of residents, rather than dictating the nature of the projects.

A number of local artists were commissioned and their impact was instrumental in raising aspirations. We were open with the community about funding, and people were not only able to see how future plans had potential to become a reality; they also had the opportunity to contribute with their ideas for future funding.

Group singing indoors during the COVID-19 pandemic

Over the past three years we have created writing groups, reading clubs, drive-by singing sessions, some YouTube series for kids and a peace choir. We have also published a monthly community magazine.

We’re also on a mission to brighten up our area. From weeding gutters to sweeping pavements, picking litter to planting greenery, we have been rolling up our sleeves and getting stuck in.

This project has given me a whole new outlook on life. It has inspired me and has refreshed my aspirations.”

Kelly’s story

Kelly McLaughlin came to us after a chance meeting when she was at a pivotal point in her life. She is now writing for the group’s publication and is planning a book of her own, based on her life experiences, with the intention of helping others who are in a similar situation.

Kelly is now our community photographer, and she is employed as a community organiser. She is community driven and wants to help the community which has supported her.

Five women outside taking a break from gardening

Looking to the future

To mark the end of our three-year Creative Civic Change journey we commissioned our local artist Sarah Palmer to create a beautiful sketchbook and journal which tells our story through illustrations interspersed with case studies from our community.

Our legacy is a proud community whose trust in our project has given them the confidence to get involved, who know they are important and know they can make change happen. There has been a continual cross over between our projects and East Marsh United. This has created a strong and purposeful community whose momentum will be a future driving force with East Marsh United.

Hear more about East Marsh Sun and Moon Festival