Pride of Place 2017
Pride of Place is an All Ireland competition celebrating the extraordinary work of communities all over the island of Ireland. The purpose of the competition is to acknowledge the work being done every day by communities all over Ireland. The competition is about showing respect and inclusion for every sector in our communities, young, old, rich or poor and creating communities to which the people are proud to say they belong. The competition is now in its 15th year and continues to grow in terms of prestige and popularity.
Pride of Place entrants and nominated by their Local Authority in population categories, single issue or designated themes, the common thread is that the nominated group make an impact and difference in their local community.
In 2017 Tipperary County Council were proud to nominate an Arts Collective from Carrick on Suir comprising of Brewery Lane Theatre, Tudor Artisan Hub and the Strand Theatre in the Creative Place Initiative category.
This collective demonstrated the vibrant and diverse culture of Arts, Music, Theatre within Carrick on Suir and its environs. These 3 venues and groups collectively showcase the very best of Irish Arts & Culture in theatre, musicals, music, arts, film, writing and crafts.
The combined culture of creativity within Carrick on Suir involves every sector of the community, involves generations of story tellers, musicians, thespians, performers, crafts, design. The community has provided venues to nurture, support and encourage this activity, nurturing generations of talent, and foster a network of creativity to engage with all within its environs across all disciplines and regardless of age or ability.
Individually each group has earned national honours and recognition, this has collectively led to the creation of a vibrant community, ambitious to succeed and create opportunities to showcase and develop talents and a thriving Arts Scene.
On the 29th of August last 2 judges representing Cooperation Ireland visited Carrick on Suir to appraise their entry in the competition. The members of the judging panel were John Briggs and Eddie Sheehy.
The judging visit commenced with a visit to the beautiful Brewery Lane theatre where a specially written and produced film was shown capturing the history, the successes, challenges and community of the collective and demonstrating the range of offering provided by the volunteers to all sectors of the community and in Carrick on Suir and its environs.
This was then followed by a question and answer session by the judges who questioned the participants in relation to their membership, their support base and their sustainability. Ann Maunsell and Angelina Laiso represented The Brewery Lane, Linda Fahy Tudor Artisan Hub and Padraig Sheehan and Ann Lonergan represented the Strand Theatre for the adjudication panel. Sandra Power acted as coordinator on the day linking all 3 elements and visited all 3 venues with the judging panel and Tipperary County Council coordinator Fiona Crotty.
This then was followed by a tour of Brewery Lane, outlining the restoration process of the venue, and meets and greet with some of the members of the Brewery Lane and picture gallery showcasing activities and productions at Brewery Lane.
The judging party then visited the treasure trove that is the Tudor Artisan Hub, nestled between the 2 theatres in Carrick on Suir. Linda Fahy led the tour outlining the range of artists that comprise and utilise the Tudor Artisan Hub and providing a market for a range of local artists to not only bring their product to the market but also to network and collaborate on projects. At the Hub the judges also met with local film producers Tadgh McLoughlan, Patrice Cooney and Pete Smith who produced the film “Torn”.
The judges were presented with a gift of beautifully crafted rugs made locally by Camphill at Tudor Artisan Hub by Linda Fahy.
The adjudication then moved onto and concluded at the Strand Theatre showcased to the group by Padraig Sheehan and archivist Ann Lonergan. The panel visited the main auditorium where a new set was being created, the rehearsal studio, back stage and the public bar and foyer area. This was also an opportunity to showcase the range of productions that have taken place in the history of the society, to outline how theatre and pantomime productions come about including the creative process, and the practicalities in their organisation. It also was an opportunity to demonstrate the nurturing and loyalty of participants who came to the theatre for academy, grew through that process and were now themselves in the adult productions and assisting at the academy and nurturing new young talent.
The judging panel were very impressed at each venue, were engaged with all of the participants and acknowledged the depth of talent within the catchment and also acknowledged the tremendous community support to ensure the sustainability of the venues in the past and for the future.
The competition will conclude with the Awards Ceremony which this year takes place on the 2nd of December in the Mount Errigal Hotel, Letterkenny, Co Donegal.
We wish our entrant the very best in the Creative Place category in the overall competition, they indeed showcased their area and County Tipperary as a creative place with a rich and vibrant history and passion for excellence and striving to build capacity within their community.