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Arun Inspires: Youth-led Public Realm

The importance of engaging local communities within placemaking is increasingly recognised: placemaking is featured in the 2021 National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and effective community engagement in public realm planning is understood to have major impacts on a sense of local ownership and quality of life. In Arun, we are exploring projects that involve young people in public realm planning in order to:

  • support their sense of connection to the communities they are growing up in;
  • increase pride of place, respect and care for their public spaces;
  • support the development of a public realm that will be meaningfully used by young people, whose social life is often spent in this sphere.

Additionally, learning about public realm design employs a range of skills connecting creativity, engineering and maths. Artswork advocates for integrating creativity across the curriculum and supports a STEAM approach to the curriculum, which explores using the arts (A), within STEM subjects. You can read more about ways this can work in our STEAM Toolkit here.

Working with the District Council, through S106 funding, parish councils, schools and local businesses, we have run two large scale public art projects in the District, in Angmering, 2020/21  and Aldingbourne 2022.

Further elements of the Youth Public Realm strand of activity include:

  • Activating Arun Youth Council as a more confident and effective platform for local youth voice engagement in public planning processes.
  • Supporting the work of parish councils and developers who wish to develop effective youth consultation on their plans.
  • Working with Arun District Council on researching and developing a Public Art Strategy that effectively incorporates youth voice.

Models created by students during the Angmering Sculpture Project

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