Post SOT City of Culture

On 7th December 2017, we at Wavemaker waited alongside everyone else for the results of the City of Culture 2021 bid. We were hopeful, really believing that our city could win, the enthusiasm and vibrancy of Stoke-on-Trent and its people hard to deny. Then the results came.

Ah.

It goes without saying that we were disappointed. Once the drinks had cleared and the people had gone, we found ourselves wondering what was the next step. What were we going to do? It didn’t take us long to figure it out. After all, just because we didn’t win the bid doesn’t make us any less a city of culture. Wavemaker believes in the people of Stoke-on-Trent. We believe in the makers, the creatives, and the people who have big ideas. That’s why, no matter what happens, we will continue to do the work we do, holding workshops to teach people digital skills and encouraging makers to keep making.

We believe that to invest in the future of Stoke-on-Trent, you have to invest in its people. That’s why we’re putting together new workshops and opportunities- our upcoming Maker Boot Camps, just to give an example. Thanks to funding from businesses such as NatWest and support from local companies and organisations, we’re excited to be starting projects that help us become more engaged with the community and expand the services we can offer. We have our ‘mobile space’ and are preparing to start travelling around the region, showing off our equipment and what it can do, and encouraging others to try making something for themselves- even if they’ve never tried before!

We’ve been working hard at our headquarters too, supporting people from all walks of life to improve digital engagement- from young people who may be out of work, education or training (NEET), to older members of our community who feel out of touch with technology and who are missing out on the chance to benefit from it.

Yes, we may have lost the City of Culture bid but we will always be a city that keeps growing, keeps dreaming, and, more than anything, keeps making.