Primary schools in Sudbury will learn about the silk industry and weaving process as Creative Young Weavers returns – continuing the legacy of Sudbury Silk Stories and weaving the way for future generations.
Sudbury-based Creative Young Weavers project, funded by the Arts Council and Babergh District Council, launched earlier this year – with plans for over 60 local school children to take part. Lockdown restrictions put the initiative on hold, but the project can now resume following measures to enable children to participate in Covid-secure workshops.
Participants will benefit from an opportunity to explore weaving, as well as a chance to expand their knowledge about the unique Sudbury silk heritage.
Local textile artist Frin Arnold will also work with children to produce individual and group woven samples, using silk waste material sourced from the local mills.
The initiative builds on existing relationships and momentum from the recent National Lottery Heritage funded project Sudbury Silk Stories – and paves the way for the return of the Sudbury Silk Festival in 2021, following the success of the 2019 event.
An exhibition, showcasing the woven panels created during the project, will be hosted by Sudbury High Street later this year – offering further opportunity to shine a spotlight on the town’s silk tradition which dates back to the 1780s.
Frin said: “We are really excited to be restarting the activity, working with the community and local schools to inspire creativity whilst being mindful of the environment. I know Sudbury and its heritage is very special for many people across Suffolk and I’m looking forward to working with our young people to get them excited about weaving and creating something from scratch.”
Derek Davis, Cabinet Member for Communities at Babergh District Council, said: “I am pleased that Creative Young Weavers can resume again – offering a creative outlet for young people after a tough few months due to Covid. Local children in Babergh will really benefit from this interactive project, as they learn new textile skills using recycled materials produced locally.
“We are proud to support this wonderful initiative, which builds on the success of the Sudbury Silk Stories film and last year’s silk festival – showcasing Sudbury’s rich heritage and attracting over 5,000 visitors to the town.
“This work with local schools and partners will allow the legacy of Sudbury’s silk past to continue, as we engage with the next generation of artists and provide opportunity for them to create their own masterpiece.”
For more information about Sudbury Silk Stories and Creative Young Weavers follow the project on Twitter and Instagram, or visit www.sudburysilkstories.com