To consider a draft Work Plan prepared by the Chair, Councillor Holland.
The Chair, Councillor Mark Holland referred to the Discussion Paper, which outlined the types of events which could be included and also some example celebrations. Members recognised that funding would need to be obtained for successful delivery.
Councillor Holland said that his intention would be for a full programme of events in the lead up to and throughout 2023, the 850th anniversary of the Borough receiving the Royal Charter.
Councillor Gill Heesom reported on the reintroduction of the Newcastle Carnival during her Mayoral year as part of the Jazz and Blues Festival and that the Carnival aspect was to be developed in future years. Councillor Heesom advised Members that meetings would take place, commencing in a few weeks, to discuss the programme of events for the 2020 Carnival.
Councillor Walklate asked that those involved in the organising of this year’s Carnival be thanked for their hard work.
Councillor Kyle Robinson identified the need for branding and suggested one method was for schools within the Borough to be invited to enter a competition to design a logo for the celebrations. It would also present the opportunity for the children to learn about the Borough’s history and heritage.
Members’ agreed that branding the event was important.
Councillor Robinson further suggested that famous people and landmarks from all around the Borough, for example, Reginald Mitchell and Harecastle Tunnel should also be used as part of any celebrations to get the wider communities enthused and involved.
Councillor Holland agreed that the ‘heroes’ of the Borough’ and historical features should be taken into consideration, encompassing ‘one Borough with a fantastic heritage’.
Councillor Holland suggested a meeting at the Borough Museum as it is the place where Newcastle’s heritage is ‘stored’.
The Council’s Head of Leisure and Cultural Services, Rob Foster advised Members that the Museum are planning a series of events for 2023 which will make items of the collection available for viewing and touring exhibitions. Mr Foster suggested inviting Ms Elise Turner of the National Lottery Heritage Fund along to a meeting as a number of the proposed themes could fit into their funding categories. Councillor Robinson advised that he had previously met with Ms Turner and subsequently, several projects had received funding. It was agreed that, if possible, Ms Turner’s invitation should coincide with the next meeting which would be held at the Borough Museum.
Mr Foster advised of the growing interest in literature and poetry in Newcastle and there was a suggestion of the Borough having a Poet Laureate. A Cabinet report is to be drafted giving this Panel the authority to make an appointment. The appointee would be from within the Borough – either residing or working here – someone with a close connection.
Mr Foster stated that culture and art could contribute to the celebrations as there was a strong interest from the a local cultural forum. There was already good collaboration in the sector.
The Chair stated that he wanted to involve the Mayor in his Civic role.
Councillor Heesom would advise the Chair of progress with the carnival.