Rivers of Opportunities

Seminar in London, UK

Seminar themes:
The use of evidence to help us understand and plan for audiences, and to help us persuade and manage stakeholders.
How to build an evidence base and what to do with it once you have it.
We used a professional team called The Audiences Agency (www.theaudienceagency.org) to facilitate the workshop.


On Thursday 25 September
-    a boat trip was organised for delegates with commentary by Jason Debney, the Co-ordinator of the Thames Landscape Strategy. Jason described the work of his NGO in safeguarding the Thames’ natural environment, in providing river habitats for wildlife and reinstating heritage views of the river.
-    The boat trip conclude with a reception for delegates at Asgill House, a Grade I listed 18th-century Palladian villa on Old Palace Lane in Richmond, London, overlooking the River Thames.

On Friday 26 September
-    A full day workshop in Orleans House.  The focus for the workshop was Audience Development in the UK context. It was led by Sarah Boiling from The Audience Agency who discussed the principles of audience development and explored strategies for reaching new visitors and deepening engagement.
-    The morning session consisted of short pecha kucha presentations from River//Cities participants on the topic: “Our experience of audience development – what has worked for us in expanding our audiences.
-    A detailed presentation was given about audience techniques used by Thames Festival Trust in the development of the first Totally Thames – there was a particular emphasis on partnership working and building a year-round ‘voice of the river’.
-    The afternoon session included presentations from two guest speakers: Paula Orrell talked about developing an audience for her festival along the River Tamar in Exeter and Liz Gardener discussed the issues she faces in developing the Govan Fair on the banks of the River Clyde in Glasgow.

 On Saturday 27 September
-    River//Cities delegates were offered the opportunity to view the Great River Race as invited guests on board the Committee Boat. This vessel started on the Thames by Millwall Slip as the race start and finished 22 miles upriver at Ham lands at the race end.
-    The River//Cities conference concluded with a feedback session.



River//Cities Seminar London Thursday 25 - Sunday 28 September. »»

Reflections of Portuguese participants

Rivers of Opportunities Grundtvig River/Cities Seminar London 25-28 September »»

Reflection of German participants

The meeting in London deepened our professional knowledge of audience development, especially with regard to collecting and evaluating data and the inclusion of non-white population (is that the politically correct term?)

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