72. New Brewery Arts, Cirencester
New Brewery Arts in Cirencester has been a centre for the arts and artistic crafts for more than 30 years.
The former Victorian brewery building was set for demolition in the 1970s until a local group proposed repair and conversion into craft workshops instead and Cirencester Workshops opened in 1979.
Subsequently, following a bequest, the former barrel store was converted in 1984 into educational studios surrounding a theatre (the Niccol Centre). Brewery Arts was formed in 1989 from the merger of Cirencester Workshops and the Niccol Centre.
Following extensive redesign and refurbishment, the New Brewery Arts galleries, shop, workshops and café opened in February 2008. Ceramicist Grayson Perry, winner of the 2003 Turner Prize, officially launched the new centre on April 3, 2008, and HRH Prince Charles visited on December 23 that year.
The workshops house 19 craft workers, including a glass blower, textile artists, ceramicist, upholsterer and jeweller. Visitors have the opportunity to watch craftspeople at work and to buy directly from them or browse an array of their work on show in the New Brewery Arts café and shop.
The New Brewery Arts Centre stages all kinds of performances. Each year, about 200,000 people from near and far visit the centre in Brewery Court, enjoying the craft shop, gallery, makers’ studios, classes, workshops and drop-ins, pop up gallery, theatre and café.
New Brewery Arts' website states that it aims to "improve lives by bringing the joy of discovering and creating craft to homes, community centres, hospitals and schools throughout the Cotswolds".
It also seeks to encourage everyone to find personal fulfilment through participating, making and lifelong learning. It aims to hold creative events that best use its facilities and professional skills to meet specific needs in the community, and to hold challenging creative events for local schools and colleges.
A registered charity, New Brewery Arts supports 20 full-time equivalent jobs, plus work experience students and business apprentices.
It also supports hundreds of individuals indirectly, including tutors, featured artists and craftspeople. The charity is supported by 20 regular volunteers.
New Brewery Arts