15 Dec Christmas Social with the Bognor Regis Creative Community
This Tuesday evening (13th Dec) we all gathered at The Pier Hotel, Bar and Diner, in Bognor Regis, for a jolly old Christmas Social. It was our final creative community check-in event of the year, and it was great to see familiar, as well as some new, faces and get an update on the development of the town’s creative digital hub.
The evening got started with a project update from Jenni Lloyd, of Wired Sussex. The team at Wired Sussex are working with West Sussex County Council on the Bognor Regis Creative Community project, and Jenni explained that there is still a lot going on behind the scenes to secure and prepare the building (two Victorian waiting rooms at Bognor Regis train station) for launch in 2017. She also talked about their different roles and contribution to the project: Wired Sussex are working to engage the local creative community in the project, and WSCC are responsible for securing the funding and the actual build of the hub space. Currently, WSCC, are deep in negotiation with Southern Rail on the terms of the lease for the two Victorian Waiting Rooms, sourcing an operator to run the hub and working with Hemingway Design on branding and the overall design of the building. It sounds like we’ll have lots to report back on in the New Year.
Jenni also told us about Coastal STEMfest’s Big Bang Event that’s happening at Butlin’s in Bognor Regis on Tuesday 14th March 2017. It’s a very lively interactive event for 750+ secondary school children that aims to inspire them to take up Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects and develop STEM careers. This year they’d really like to increase the amount of tech companies taking part and offering activities so if you’d like to get involved just let us know via twitter or the comments box below. For more information and to see photos from last year’s event: http://www.coastalstemfest.co.uk/gallery.
We then heard from Mike Holley, Head of Creative & Digital Technologies, at Chichester University. Mike’s presentation was a snapshot of the new Engineering & Digital Technology Park being built at the Bognor Regis campus that’s launching in September 2018. With this exciting new facility the university aims to equip students for the new digital world. Among the new resources on offer will be::
- Nine professional recording suites
- A fully sound-proofed room – big enough to hold an orchestra
- Dedicated green screen stage
- Industry standard master suite
As well as courses in motion capture training, motion control and robotics, gaming concepts and 3D animation, and much more. To quote Mike: ‘Bognor will become Soho by the sea with all this expertise and equipment!’ The building, the plans, and aspirations, definitely captured everybody’s attention and if you want to see more of Mike’s presentation you can download it here (link).
A Q&A session followed and we could feel the sparks of interest crackling around the room. It’s an exciting development for Bognor Regis which will attract industry attention and up to 1500 new students to the town. shares the same community aims as the Bognor Regis Creative Hub project, so I’m sure we’ll be hearing more from Mike and members of his team in future. After a well-deserved round of applause, it was back to networking, mince pies and pulling a few crackers.
Thank you to everybody who came along to the event. It was good to see you all and we’re looking forward to meeting up again in 2017. There are lots of plans for next year so keep in touch, and if you have any questions or would like to contribute ideas for future events, let us know.
Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year.
Date for the diary: Next event 24 January 2017
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