About the project
This research commission for Thinking Space was part of a nationwide consultation with hard-to-reach young people about cultural activity in the UK today. In the summer of 2010 The ‘Tell Us Bus’ visited schools, cultural venues, youth clubs and festivals in each of the nine English government office regions. Why a bus? Because we wanted to be able to go directly to young people wherever they might be, to have face to face conversations about culture. In just one month we had 1,394 of these conversations with young people, aged 7-19, from across all nine regions.
The report we produced acknowledged that the young people we spoke to will grow up in a period of financial austerity; in their recommendations they acknowledged this as well as the reality that their requests must compete against many. We stressed that though the report must be mindful of the limitations of resources it must also be uncompromising in its message: Culture can enrich and transform young people’s lives. If we want confident, broad-minded, aspiring adults who can contribute to the recovery of this country, then it’s a message worth hearing.