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Creative Skills Hub Launch

The response has been great with businesses demonstrating a real willingness to engage with the issues around skills;

The Creative Skills Hub has been designed to link up activities and opportunities in the Bristol and Bath area. The hub provides a strong talent pipeline that will support the ‘Creative Growth’ project; this provides support for creative micro-businesses to step up their activities and create employment opportunities. The region has an Enterprise Zone growing in the area around Temple Meads station, with the specific focus on creative, high-technology and low carbon industries.

There is a lot of great work going on across the region to provide opportunities for small businesses and talented individuals in the Creative Industries. Our aim is to draw that work together to focus on the three key points in a career:

  • Advice on working in the Creative Industries
  • How to get your first role in the industry
  • How to develop a sustainable career

In the west we have Andy Freedman and his team at Cirencester College, with a great track-record in delivering Creative Skillset Ticked apprenticeships. The rollout of the Creative Skillset Tick is building accreditation of training opportunities on offer in the area. Sam Thomson, Director of Civic and Cultural Engagement at the Faculty of Arts at the University of the West of England (UWE), has worked with Knowle West Media Centre on entry-level employment into the Creative Industries to highlight best practice and the need for diversity in creative employment. The importance of such organisations as Knowle West Media Centre is clear and they are defined as Community-Media Sector Connectors.

Nicky Williams from the Creative Skills Hub at the West of England LEP and Carole Sartain from Creative Skillset are working together, along with other partners, to develop the Creative Skills Hub offer for businesses. Following on from September’s launch events Carole and Nicky will be pulling together a picture of the local skills gaps, best practice in managing work placements and apprenticeships, and creating case studies that show the pathways for aspiring talent.

With input from a diverse range of small creative businesses such as The Real Adventure (who have a Higher Level Apprentice starting on Monday!), Giggle Group, Yantra Digital, Calling the Shots and Zen United Ltd as well as bigger players such as BBC Bristol, South West Design Forum, and The Bristol Games Hub we can cover the whole local ecology.

As the Chair of the Creative Sector for the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership, my role is to ensure the links between company growth and talent development really underpins the industry locally, and attracts new companies to the area. It’s a national centre for the BBC, Creative England and Creative Skillset. The region has national centres for animation and publishing and is fabulously supported by further and higher education institutions – the future is bright in the west of England!