As part of Torbay’s new Cultural Strategy - Enjoy, talk, do, be - the first Torbay Culture Forum was recently held at the Berry Head Hotel and attracted 80 people all with an interest in developing cultural opportunities in the Bay.

Free to attend and funded by Arts Council England, the event was extremely well received and focused on how culture, such as arts, sport, environment and heritage, can help address health issues and contribute to quality of life for everyone in the Bay.

Attendees included artists, dancers, writers, theatre volunteers, primary school teachers, librarians, GPs, local councillors, play workers, youth leaders, funders, sport coaches, academics and policy makers who explored together culture’s role in health and wellbeing in the context of Enjoy, talk, do, be.

Gerry Cadogan, Public Health Principal for Torbay, said: “The day was all about making connections between health and cultural sectors and to hold conversations about health, happiness and wellbeing. The event was extremely positive in bringing about change and was a great start for the Culture Forum.

“With pioneer status for integrated health and care, an active Healthwatch and £6 million BIG lottery funding for the Torbay Community Development Trust's Ageing Well programme, which includes a significant arts element, Torbay is set to develop a really innovative approach to this area of work.”

Speakers on the day included Dr Derek Greatorex, Interim Chief Clinical Officer of South Devon and Torbay Clinical Commissioning Group, who gave a health sector overview. Ruth Ben-Tovim presented an update on Torbay’s Ageing Well project and Gerry Cadogan, Torbay Council Peninsula Public Health Network Lead, spoke about how Enjoy, talk, do, be can support wellbeing at every stage of life.

Dr Dan Bloomfield from the University of Exeter spoke about mainstreaming the prescription of nature to improve wellbeing and Lisa Tregale of Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra showed work using music with people living with dementia and their families.

The Culture Forum was formed as part of the culture strategy, Enjoy, talk, do, be. Torbay Council and Torbay Development Agency (TDA) facilitated, with public funding from Arts Council England, the development of the ten year cultural strategy, which was officially launched in December 2014. Forum events will take place four times a year.

The strategy has vision, ambitions and principles which set out how Torbay could be in ten years time. Culture, as outlined in the strategy, includes everything from visual and performing arts to the built and natural environment, heritage, libraries, media, museums, play, sport, tourism and informal leisure pursuits.

For further information on Torbay’s Cultural Strategy go to www.torbaydevelopmentagency.co.uk/cultural-strategy


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