Our events are hosted in the city as well as online. Our relaxed monthly Socials are a great way to meet others and hear inspirational talks from local and national creatives. Our online, monthly Hub events are the ideal platform to promote what you are doing and call out for support and collaboration.

If you are holding a creative or cultural event in or near Chelmsford then fill in the ‘Add your event’ form below, and we will include in the monthly Ignite Members’ and Friends’ newsletters.

We recommend that all events are also listed on the Chelmsford for You website, the central hub for event listings in Chelmsford. 

Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Ignite Social: Co-curation, Cultural Institutions and the Community

10 August 2023 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Image shows Displays from Power of Stories by Ipswich Museums and Aspire Black Suffolk

This month we will hear from cultural institutions on new approaches to designing and curating exhibitions with local communities.

Every second Thursday of the month, we host a social meet-up with creative inspiration and an opportunity to connect and learn how we can support one another’s work.

Cultural institutions are radically re-thinking the way they approach, curate and display their content. One of the drivers behind this is to allow perspectives, stories, artifacts and histories of different groups to be heard and seen. Co-creating / curating jointly with communities is vital to ensuring content and narratives are real and institutions become more representative of the population.

This month we will discuss some of the approaches to co-design, and think about what else can be done.

Our Speakers:

Sarah Davies, Manager of Chelmsford Museum, will introduce our two speakers while referring to their own approach to designing and curating recent exhibitions with local communities.

Speaker 1: Elma Glasgow, a storyteller for social change.

How can stories shape our sense of identity and belonging? How can they inspire us to take action for a more diverse and inclusive society? These are the questions that drive Elma Glasgow, an award-winning consultant who works with organisations and communities across the UK.
Elma will share her insights from Aspire Black Suffolk, a local initiative that ran alongside Power of Stories, which was an exhibition co-curated by Ipswich Museums and the local community.

Speaker 2: Sally Shaw MBE, Director of Firstsite.

Sally Shaw is a visionary leader in the arts and culture sector, with a wealth of experience in curating public art projects for the Mayor of London and London Underground. As the Director of Firstsite, a contemporary art gallery in Colchester, Sally has led the organisation to use art and culture as a means of addressing critical challenges in the community, such as deprivation, food poverty and inequity.

Sally will talk about Firstsite’s innovative community collaborations and co-curation work, which have involved thousands of local people in creating and enjoying art. She will discuss how Firstsite has been part of the National Partners programme, celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Arts Council Collection.

What to expect

Patch, 5 – 6 Grays Yard, Springfield Rd, Chelmsford, CM2 6QR

7-10pm, Thursday 10th August

  • From 7pm – People begin arriving, relaxed music is played.
  • 7-7.30pm – Getting drinks and catching up with fellow creatives in the bar space. There are activities such as pens/paper for doodling, and free space and seats in the foyer if you’d prefer.
  • 30-9pm – People move through to the presentation space, to sit down and hear from the speakers – speakers stand at the front and often use power point presentations. There is a Q&A at the end, giving an opportunity to ask questions of the speakers.
  • 9-10pm – Some people choose to leave at 9, others choose to stay to informally catch up further. The bar is open until 10pm.

The bar serves water, tea, coffee, cola / diet cola, beer and red and white wine, we accept card, but don’t normally accept cash.

Image: Displays from Power of Stories by Ipswich Museums and Aspire Black Suffolk


Photography may be taken at the social to use for Ignite media – please email to let us know if you do not want your image used.

We are working to make our social events as inclusive, accessible and welcoming as possible. We would love to hear from you any ideas, questions or concerns about attending events and taking part in Ignite. Please contact us on


Ignite – be part of a thriving creative community in Chelmsford

To stay in the loop on cultural events sign up to the Ignite Chelmsford mailing list – choosing Cultural Forum (Ignite Chelmsford) from the checklist. And follow us on Social media via Facebook and Instagram, or visit our webpage

If you work or volunteer in the creative sector – or aspire to – please consider:

  • Adding yourself to the Ignite member directory – where you can showcase what you are doing locally and see what others are doing.
  • Dropping into the next Ignite online collaborative hub meeting, the fourth Thursday of every month, 12-1.30pm – to share what you are currently working on or thinking about, and to find chances to collaborate and share knowledge.


10 August 2023
7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Register Here


Ignite Chelmsford