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ROCKAWAY PARK'S WORKSHOPS

Here at Rockaway Park, we’re committed to engaging with the local community and beyond.

With a wealth of talented craftspeople, artists, makers, musicians and performers - all keen to share their skills and experience in a supportive and inspirational environment - our series of workshops are open to everyone and kept as low in price as we can make them.

For a taster of our workshops, see the short video below.

If you'd like to get in touch to express an interest in past workshops being run again, or you'd like to collaborate with us on a workshop, or you'd like more details about our workshop experiences, please visit our Workshop Archive page by clicking below

Alternatively, if you'd like to support Rockaway to enable us to provide more low-cost and free workshops, you can become a Patreon. With a small monthly donation, you can help us continue our valuable work supporting the community and providing valuable skills-based sessions to those who need them. For all the info on how you can become a Rockaway Patreon, please click on the image below.


Rockaway Park's circular Patreon symbol with a colourful picture in the centre featuring the Rockaway yard, plus the words 'Help Rockaway Thrive. Become a Patreon'

You will also be helping spread the crucial message that actively supporting each other in these testing times is a way to initiate positive change.

Thank you!

CURRENT WORKSHOPS

Creative RevolutionHERies

Montage of images featuring women welding, doing metalwork and woodwork, plus examples of a metal planter and a wooden bench to promote the activities of Creative RevolutionHERies

We're delighted that Rockaway Park has been awarded a Willson Grant, which aims to provide residents in the Somer Valley with more opportunities to boost their physical and mental wellbeing. The grant supports individuals, community groups and organisations to provide free active travel, or creative, sustainable and cultural projects in the area. 

 

Our project, Creative RevolutionHERies, provides two sets of 6-week workshops in woodwork, metalwork and welding for young women, with the aim of supporting their wellbeing and growing their confidence through the development of new skills. The workshops will also provide a safe environment where new friendships can be built. 

 

At the end of each workshop programme, there will be planters and benches created from reclaimed materials for the Somer Valley Greenways to encourage people to get active in the area and explore the many beautiful green spaces.

The workshop places have now been filled by a fantastic group of women keen to learn these skills and come together to create something remarkable! We'll be providing updates each week with a blog below so anyone can follow our progress with this exciting project.

Creative RevolutionHERies Blog

Porcelain Minikins Making Workshop

Saturday 1st June 1.30pm - 4pm

Montage of pictures from Bev Millward's Porcelain Minikins Making Workshop - Bev working in her studio, students experimenting with porcelain clay, ceramic tools and ceramic minikins creations.

Try your hand at working with porcelain and invent your own fantasy matchbox creature in this personal and light hearted minikin making workshop with Rockaway's amazing resident ceramic artist, Bev Milward.

During this relaxing afternoon session in Bev's studio you'll:

- Discover how porcelain differs from other clays

- Learn simple traditional making techniques

- Through doodling, drift into producing a mini matchbox character (possibly with an amusing backstory) using Bev's new secret method!

This focused and friendly workshop is designed for adults to relax and tune into their natural creativity. It's an ideal activity for introverts or anyone who wants to come out and play, but isn't sure how.

Suitable for age 14+, you don't need any experience of working with clay, you just need to be willing to try something new. 

Cost is £55 and includes firing, clear glazing and postage. You'll also be given a 10% discount on purchasing any of Bev's stunning work!

After the workshop your piece(s) will be fired and glazed, then sent to you in the post, or you can collect them if you live nearby. Your piece(s) are small and will need to dry and go into the kiln twice with other work, which means allowing 3 - 4 weeks for delivery.  

 

The workshop group is small and places are limited. So, if you'd like to take part, please click below

Automata Workshop

Saturday 1st & Sunday 2nd June, 9am - 5pm

A montage of 3 of Fi Henshall's beautiful automata creations featuring a mix of moving parts - wheels, kettles, small doors and windows, miniature books, miniature figures, bells and other minute metal pieces.

We're really excited to be able to offer this automata workshop with the brilliant Fi Henshall. We're especially excited because there are hardly any automata workshops available in the world, so it's a unique opportunity to learn this magical creative skill from a true expert!

This 2-day workshop will introduce participants to basic mechanisms, as well as enable them to experiment with ways in which they can be combined with form to create automata with a narrative theme. The combination of movement and materials, such as wood, wire, metal tubes, metal sheets, found objects and figures, will be explored, with Fi using some examples of her own work to demonstrate the mechanisms you'll be working with.

 

Fi will also draw attention to the use of different materials, colours, textures and compositions, as well as share some helpful books on automata making. By the end of the first morning you'll be provided with the basic ingredients of an automaton - cranks, cams, levers, pulleys and a treasure trove of other materials - which you can assemble, customise and elaborate on with Fi's help and guidance.

 

At the end of the second afternoon there will be a 'show and tell' to enjoy each other's creations, as well as a chance to discuss any improvements or future plans.

Expect to work with wood, wire, metal tubes and sheets, old tins and found objects.

 

Most materials will be provided by Fi, but please bring any of your own interesting materials or found objects you would like to work with.

Montage of two automata birds on tree stumps, created in previous workshops. Plus, photos of metal objects and other cornucopia that can be used to create automata.

Cost for this 2-day workshop is £250.

 

We fully understand that this means many of Rockaway's followers will not be able to afford to take part in this workshop, but we're hoping to secure funding or donations at some point in the future to enable us to run another automata workshop that will be affordable for more people. 

If you'd like to take part in this unique and exciting workshop, please click below.

NB: If you're fortunate enough to be in a position where you'd like to support someone on low income or benefits to take part in this workshop, that would be amazing! Please get in touch below to let us know and thank you - your support for someone else could be life-changing and will be very much appreciated.

Alternatively, you can become a Rockaway Patreon with a small monthly donation that will help us do so much more.


Rockaway Park's circular Patreon symbol with a colourful picture in the centre featuring the Rockaway yard, plus the words 'Help Rockaway Thrive. Become a Patreon'

Songwriting Workshop

Sunday 14th July

Songwriting workshop flyer featuring a palette of pink and purples with drawings of Carol Hodge and Julia Othmer, plus details about the workshop.

We’re thrilled that piano-playing, singing song crafters Carol Hodge and Julia Othmer are joining us for a special Sunday Session in July, as well as to provide this amazing songwriting workshop!

 

Across the Atlantic Ocean - from the unlikely locations of Huddersfield in Yorkshire and Kansas City, USA - Carol and Julia have struck up a pen pal relationship of songs, bringing light to what divides and unites us, geographically, politically and personally. Having met on tour in 2018 supporting Welsh legends The Alarm, the pair quickly bonded over their shared love of all things heart-centred and magical.

 

With over 40 combined years of songwriting and performance between them, they've got ample experience of songwriting, performance, collaboration and creativity to share.  

Montage of striking photographs featuring Carol Hodge and Julia Othmer performing at carious gigs.

For this special workshop, Carol and Julia will open their tool kit of artistic approaches to unlock creative potential, including strategies to handle the proverbial 'blank page;' working through writer’s block and expanding possibilities. They will guide the group through a series of games and experiments with exercises that can be translated to a variety of artistic mediums. The workshop also provides time for a Q&A and live co-creation with workshop participants.

 

All are welcome, at any level of experience.

Places are limited, so if you'd like to take part, please click on the image below to book.

Our Workshop Programme in 2024

Montage of workshops that have taken place at Rockaway - ethical screen-printing, poetry writing, guitar for beginners, junkyard jungle, welding for women, silversmithing and Rockaway kids

We've been lucky enough to work with some fantastic practitioners delivering workshops and delighted by the response to everything we've offered with some amazing feedback from participants. Thanks to each and every one of you for taking part.

Montage of skills - painting, metalwork, woodwork and sewing

 In 2024, we'd like to continue offering creative practitioners space for hire to deliver their workshops at Rockaway in the classroom, terrace, chapel, main shed, or yard, with electricity and heating provided, if needed. PLUS, we'll promote your workshop through our newsletter, website and social media platforms, which means it will reach a following of over 25,000 people.

 

It will be like any other venue hire to deliver a workshop, except our Michelle will happily work with you on promotional materials, such as images, info and videos (if you have them) to help with workshop recruitment. 

If you're interested in running a creative workshop at Rockaway with this approach, then please get in touch below for a chat. We look forward to hearing from you!

Accommodation Options

Picture of the Rockaway atrium with an apartment window and bougainvillea
A bedroom in one of the Rockaway Air BnB apartments

If you're travelling from afar for a workshop or visit, don't forget there are on-site accommodation options at Rockaway. To find out more and check availability, head to our Accommodation page!

ROCKAWAY PARK

"Would those who say it can't be done, please stand clear of those doing it"

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