Oxford Green Week receives funding boost from Arts Council England

Published: Wednesday, 26th April 2017

Oxford City Council has been awarded £14,750 from Arts Council England towards this year’s Oxford Green Week festival.

Oxford Green Week, which takes place between 17 and 25 June, is a city-wide festival that uses culture, creativity and community to inspire local people to take action against climate change.           

Events taking place include:

  • The Big Green Day Out launch event – a free, family friendly event on Broad Street featuring arts and crafts, live entertainment, hands on workshops and delicious local food and drink.
  • Test Drive the Future at Cherwell School -  an opportunity to test drive a range of new electric and hydrogen fuelled cars for free and learn about the future of low carbon transport. Featuring guest speaker Robert Llewellyn from Red Dwarf and Scrapheap Challenge.
  • Over a dozen free ‘Green Behind the Scenes’ events – expert-led tours highlighting green features of Oxford colleges, Pegasus Theatre, Sheldonian Museum the John Radcliffe hospital and many more
  • The Big Green Treasure Hunt – a prize activity trail where you can discover hidden green highlights all across the city, with a chance to win the star prize of a Brompton bike if you visit 5 or more

The festival – which was formerly known as Low Carbon Oxford Week – is now in its fourth year.

The Arts Council England funding will be used to bring large-scale interactive arts events and activities to the festival in 2017 as follows:

  • £8,250 to Film Oxford to work with young people from Oxford using their Digital Youth platform to create a light and sound show on the theme of water, called ‘H2O’.  Public performances of ‘H2O’ will take place at Hinksey Outdoor Pool on Friday 16 June and Saturday 17 June and will include an optional midnight swim
  • £5,000 to local artists Roger Perkins and Hugh Pryor from OVADA (Oxford Visual Arts Development Agency) to create a giant interactive sculpture from scrap bicycle parts which will be the centrepiece of the free Big Green Day Out event on Broad Street on Saturday 10 June
  • £1,500 to well-known community artist Su Frizell (a.k.a. ‘Groovy Su’) from the Ark-T Centre, who will invite members of the public at the Big Green Day Out to help create further giant interactive sculptures from bicycle wheels and scrap fabric

Jenny Carr, Oxford City Council’s Oxford Green Week event organiser, said: “We are very excited that the Arts Council is supporting this year’s Oxford Green Week festival.

“This funding boost means we can bring spectacular and environmentally-friendly art to the festival that everyone has an opportunity to interact with and enjoy.

“I can’t wait to see what our talented local artists will create by working with our communities.”

Roger Perkin, from OVADA, said: “We are looking forward to the challenge of creating a giant sculpture on Broad Street to launch the festival. 

“We already use a lot of recycled materials in our work and it’s a great way of educating people about reducing waste.  

“Our first 50 discarded bicycles arrived at OVADA last week and we can’t wait to get our hands on them and start making our piece.”

Su Frizell, from Ark-T, said: “I’m really excited to be bringing large-scale community art to this event.

“Over the course of the day the public, of all ages and abilities, will have the opportunity to participate in the creation of a bicycle wheel pyramid, woven with colourful waste resources.

“Their engagement will provide an opportunity to talk about sustainability and our shared responsibility to use the Earth’s resources wisely, whilst collaborating creatively to produce something beautiful from rubbish.”

Geron Swann, Centre Director at Film Oxford, said: “We are really keen to be part of Oxford Green Week and it’s great that the Arts Council has put money behind our ‘H2O’ idea. 

“It’s going to be a real spectacle and will hopefully get people thinking about important issues too. 

“If you enjoyed Ice Station Digital at Oxford Ice Rink in 2015 then you will love H2O at Hinksey Pool.”

Notes to editors

Oxford Green Week 2017 is organised by Oxford City Council in partnership with Good Food Oxford, University of Oxford, Oxford Brookes University, Community Action Groups Oxfordshire, Lady Margaret Hall and the Environmental Change Institute.  It is funded by Oxford City Council with additional support from the Oxford Strategic Partnership, Environmental Change Institute and Westgate ARISE.  

Last year’s festival featured more than 100 events and attracted an audience of over 40,000 people.

Grants for the Arts is the Arts Council England’s open access funding programme for individuals, art organisations and other people who use the arts in their work. It offers awards from £1,000 to £100,000 to support a wide variety of arts-related activities, from dance to visual arts, literature to theatre, music to combined arts.