I was delighted to be invited to present at AHRC's Common Grounds first national event at the University of York in June. The AHRC have defined the Common Ground initiative as 'a celebration of the AHRC community', providing the opportunity to share our knowledge, experiences and expertise. The event provided fertile ground in which to meaningfully network and establish new research partners. It certainly seemed to me that many conversations-with-a-purpose were taking place and the clashing/sharing of ideas were leading to further thinking and initiatives.
I, along with the splendid Professor Owen Evans (zone co-curator) and Nick Ewbanks were presenting 'Join Together: Building Arts, Health and Wellbeing Networks'. For me it proved a joyful time, not only for sharing ideas but also connecting with other practitioners and researchers who similarly work in and with communities situated at the country's periphery. Our session was delivered in the Collaborate Zone which had been curated by Owen and Elaine Farrell, to specifically reflect the rich, diverse, hugely imaginative mechanisms by which the arts and humanities interact with each other, inform practice, generate debate and engage with communities in creative, often unforeseen ways.