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The Straits Committee is pleased to announce the winners of its 4th call for small projects

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North Sea in 395 AD
View over Dunkirk (Credit: FRAC Grand Large Hauts-de-France)

The Straits Committee’s 4th call for projects closed in October 2022. The members of the Executive Committee, deliberating both in person in Dunkirk on 16th November, and by written procedure in December, agreed to support the following projects:

Bridging the North Sea

Project partners: Province of Zuid-Holland; Hazenberg Archeologie; National Museum of Antiquities; Province of Zeeland; Stichting Cultureel Erfgoed Zeeland; Kent County Council; Newcastle University (out-of-area partner); Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums (out-of-area partner); University of Ghent; Province of West-Flanders; Romeins Archeologisch Museum Oudenburg; City of Boulogne-Sur-Mer; Département of Nord.

Regions covered: Zuid-Holland (NL); Kent (UK); West-Flanders; East-Flanders (BE); Zeeland (NL); Pas-de-Calais; Nord (FR); and outside the Straits network, Newcastle (UK)

The Bridging the North Sea project aims to set up an innovative transnational network of scientists, scholars, civil workers, commercial organizations, museums, curators and volunteers along the coasts of the North Sea Basin covering four countries to start with: the United Kingdom, France, Belgium and the Netherlands.

The goal of the international consortium is to produce an archaeological research programme and interpretation plan of the North Sea basin in Roman times, raising awareness among modern coastal residents of their maritime heritage, the North Sea’s historic role in connecting the area, and how present challenges such as rising sea levels were dealt with in the past.

The actions planned are:

  • Building and launching the ‘Bridging the North Sea Network’;
  • Setting up and promoting the ‘Bridging the North Sea Network’ communication platform
  • Working Groups to map out archaeological research projects and initiatives taking place in the Network area, identify key themes and develop a framework which can inspire future research;
  • Developing an interpretation plan to demonstrate that the Roman History of the North Sea Straits and the North of England region is still relevant today and could influence the lives of its residents and its communities;
  • Organising a final conference in order to present the action plan consisting of the research framework and interpretation plan developed by the Bridging the North Sea network and its working groups.

Circulating Energies

Project partners: FRAC Grand Large — Hauts-de-France (Nord); Open School East (Kent)

Regions covered: Kent (UK); Nord (FR);

The Circulating Energies project will build on an existing Franco-British residency for artists called MAGNETIC, and the 2023 Dunkirk Triennial of Art & Industry, to develop a new cross border partnership between FRAC GRAND LARGE, a major cultural institution for contemporary art in Dunkirk; the Ecole Supérieure d’art Dunkerque-Tourcoing; and Open School East, an independent art school in Margate, Kent.

The project will allow the participating organisations to better understand the context in which artistic curriculums are delivered and created in France and the UK, and to explore how a shared, international curriculum could be tested.
Using research developed by the MAGNETIC artist in residence for a new public artwork for the Dunkirk Triennial on the theme of energy, the project will see the partners work with the artist to develop new pedagogical materials and a mentoring programme that the artist will deliver to students in the Nord and in Kent. This work will also include the production of a public event by the students and artist to take place during the Dunkirk Triennial.

The actions planned are:

  • Two discovery visits to the partners’ headquarters in Dunkirk and Margate to understand each other’s work, aims and objectives and to plan the project
  • Creation of curriculum materials to support a mentoring programme led by the artist in residence.
  • Delivery of a mentoring programme to students at Open School East and Ecole Supérieure d’art Dunkerque-Tourcoing (September-December 2023)
  • Public seminar delivered by students and the artist in residence to take place during the Dunkirk Triennial (January 2024)
  • An end-of-project sharing-and-dissemination event in Margate

The Straits Committee wishes all applicants every success with their projects and hopes they will inspire many other projects that can benefit the Straits area to come forward.

Do you have an idea for a project that can help implement the priorities of the Straits Committee’s vision and strategy? If so, please get in touch with your member authority. Contact details can be found on our contact us page.

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