Fun Palace at Belper Goes Green

After the success of our first Fun Palace in Belper it was decided to run another at Belper Goes Green. This is a fantastic Eco Festival run by Transition Belper for the local community. All the information about the festival can be found here Belper Goes Green ,this includes what’s on and parking.

The part that I have been responsible for is the Fun Palace Tent. I hope the weather will be good but if not we have lots of fun and informative workshops in the marquee so you will still be dry.The workshops, (as they should be for a Fun Palace) are a mixture of Science, Art, Craft and Nature inspired. There will also be the opportunity to learn CPR with Amber First Responders 

There will be the chance to make a willow bird feeder, a willow wand or do some lolly stick weaving. 

Katherine Wheatley will be making Carbon Monsters and she will be running a competition to win a copy of her very popular book.

There will be lots of Science and Engineering  on offer with the opportunity to make a whirlpool in a bottle, discover what bugs lurk in the local Coppice Brook, make your own mini wind/water wheel, put together an aluminium engine and make a catapult plane or spinning helicopter.

There is also plenty of Art and Craft, you will be able to make a collage of Belper, learn some origami, make a hedgehog, turn milk bottle caps into fridge magnets, make monsters with clay or make your own fairy with pipe cleaners and wool.

The workshops take place each day between 11.00-13.00 and 14.00-16.00. Each session has different activities except the learning of CPR which will be a constant. here is a PDF of the full workshop time table.  Fun Palace Workshops

Here is a map of the site.

Belper Fun Palace 2016

It is not long now until Belper’s first Fun Palace. The event will take place on October 1st from 12.00 – 16.00 in the venue Number 28 which is situated on the Market Place in Belper. I have written in a previous post about how Fun Palaces started and each year since 2014 the movement has grown. The Fun Palace movement says, WE BELIEVE IN THE GENIUS IN EVERYONE, IN EVERYONE AN ARTIST AND EVERYONE A SCIENTIST, AND THAT CREATIVITY IN COMMUNITY CAN CHANGE THE WORLD FOR THE BETTER.comic.jpeg

In a previous blog post I have given information about some of the activities that will go on and in this post is more information about opportunities to be creative and have fun. Also a reminder that there will be a chance to learn CPR with Amber Community First Responders who will also hope to have their car outside the venue.car

You will be able to make your own song bird with the help of Nansy Ferret. Nansy is a local artist and also singer and songwriter in Belper band, Red Ruff. For the Fun Palace she will be giving you the opportunity to combine songs – either your own or somebody else’s – with visual image. Come along, play with words and create a bird to sing in your home or to give to a loved one so that they can see your song each day! You can see more of Nansy’s work by following her on facebook as Nansy Ferrett-Campbell or on twitter @monster_nip.FullSizeRender

The Derbyshire branch of the British Science Association will be there with some Science fun and experiments for visitors to join in with.BSA

There will be the chance to use your creativity with pipe cleaners and wool to make a variety of characters either human, animal or magical.FairyFullSizeRender

Artist Tan Draig will be leading a hands on activity with Platonic solids before he attempts (with the help of the public) to make the largest string vest in the world at 15.00 hours.platon1

There will be some creative recycling, using glass jars to make decorative tea light holders.FullSizeRender-2

This event will also have a cafe for light refreshments between activities.

Belper’s Fun Palace


Its only about six weeks until Belper’s Fun Palace which will take place at Number 28, The Market Place, Belper. The fun will start at 12 noon and finish at 4.00pm. I am writing this blog post to inform everyone about some of the planned activities.

Tan Draig a local artist is aiming to get people to help make the largest string vest in the world. The string vest will be exhibited later in October as part of ‘Belper in Bloomers’ underwear exhibition (to launch on Sat 22 Oct as part of Discovery days) at Number 28. Here is a link to all that is happening during the Discovery Days.Tan

The photo above of Tan was taken at the opening of the “part of the Fabric’ exhibition that he made in Belper’s North Mill. There is a very good account of this piece of work in the Derby Telegraph.

The large string vest will be made by a human knitting machine and Tan will need lots of help to achieve this. This particular activity will take place during the afternoon at 3.00pm. Before this time Tan has promised to enable visitors to join in with a fun mathematic activities.

There will also be creative workshops for people both adults and children to join in with. Marilyn Deakin another Belper artist will be running a collage workshop suitable for all. Here is an example of her work

MDtransitionautumn_cropped2_thumb and much more can be found on her website http://www.marilyndeakincreativeart.co.uk

Marilyn like myself believes that everyone is an artist, these are her words, “ For me its about communication and passing on skills and opportunities for people as I believe everyone is an artist – they just need to find themselves – that is my aim.”She is planning an Autumn collage workshop for the Fun Palace and has sent me this photo, however everyones work will be unique to themselves. leaf collage

There will be a chance for visitors to learn how to perform CPR correctly with help of Amber First Responders. This skill could help you save a life and is worth everyone becoming familiar with.CPR

Here is a link to their Facebook Page and a link to their Twitter Page.

There will be a chance to have a go at making something with stamps thanks to Helen from All Things Stampy. She was one of the first Independent Stampin’ Up!® demonstrators in the UK when it launched in November 2007. She runs workshops and has a website http://allthingsstampy.blogspot.co.uk/ where you can order all you would need to make the most amazing cards etc. This is a fantastic chance to have a first go at making something for free.

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These activities are a taste of what will be on offer at Belper’s Fun Palace. In about a week I will write about some of the other amazing activities that you can enjoy on October 1st at Number 28.

Here is a picture of how one young person imagines a Fun palace to look, so do come along on October 1st to see for yourself.Fun Palace 1

Fun Palace

Last year I attended my first Fun Palace at Derby Silk Mill Museum. I had not heard about Fun Palaces before but always enjoyed attending activities at the museum. downloadThe original idea for Fun Palaces dates back to 1961 when Joan Littlewood and Cedric Price came up with the idea and designed the Fun Palace which they called a ‘Laboratory of Fun’. Joan said that she believed in the genius in every person and also in the idea of community.

It was to be a temporary and movable home to the arts and sciences, open and welcoming to all. For many reasons it wasn’t possible in 1961 and the Fun Palace never came to fruition as a building. The idea however, of a space welcoming and open to all, bringing arts and sciences together, where everyone is an artist and everyone a scientist, remained a GREAT idea.

The Fun Palace became an annual reality from 2014 when Stella Duffy and Sarah-Jane Rawlings organised the first Fun Palaces throughout the country. The first ones took place on the hundredth anniversary of Joan’s birth. The idea quickly grew to become an event taking place worldwide on the first weekend in October. This year that is October 1st and 2nd.

THE FUN PALACES MANIFESTO

WE BELIEVE IN THE GENIUS IN EVERYONE, IN EVERYONE AN ARTIST AND EVERYONE A SCIENTIST, AND THAT CREATIVITY IN COMMUNITY CAN CHANGE THE WORLD FOR THE BETTER.
WE BELIEVE WE CAN DO THIS TOGETHER, LOCALLY, WITH RADICAL FUN – AND THAT ANYONE, ANYWHERE, CAN MAKE A FUN PALACE.

The idea is that it is an event organised by local people for the fun and enjoyment of local people. Here is a short video from 2014 explaining a little more about the idea behind Fun Palaces.

This year I am planning to organise Belper’s first Fun Palace to take place at Number 28 situated on the Market Place Belper.10460502_506304829499772_9086914353426889366_n

The event will take place on Saturday October 1st from 12 noon until 4.00pm.

However the fun begins now with the fun of planning the event. I have just made a comic strip from a link on the Fun Palace website.comic.jpeg

Above is the one that I have made. There is also a Write, Science competition which needs to be completed by the end of this month July 2016.

Planning is already going ahead for Belper’s first Fun Palace which is to be a fun community event for all age groups. I will be writing soon about the activities, however if anyone reading this post has an idea that could be included please get in contact through the comments.

Here are three more comic strips made by my grandchildren just for the fun of it.

GComic IComic NComic