February 13, 2018 at 4:00 am #144638
I think you hit the nail on the head when you say about how it’s just an art gallery that few people are expected to visit.
Most local people fall into a few camps who are unlikely to ever visit or add revenue to the place. The first lot being dead against Ty Pawb as they think it’s a huge waste of money for something no-one asked for & wish the money was spent on reducing cuts or on something more beneficial to local life. These people see it as a millstone around the council’s neck & actively want it to fail & verbally sabotage something within the local community just so the failure can bring about prospective regime change.
Then there are local people who will have heard of it, read about it in the local press but quite simply aren’t into art galleries or arts and crafts stuff. You could move the Louvre to Wrexham & they’d still not visit. They quite simply just don’t care.
Then there is a huge swathe of local people who don’t pay attention to local news & goings on & will never even have heard of it despite the extravagant launch. Lots of younger people (but not limited to that demographic.) They’ll have never stepped foot in the library or museum or even St Giles. Ty Pawb will quite simply just be off their radar & won’t make it through the filters.
This leaves a remaining local slice of the pie who like to try new things when they open up, maybe families looking for activities. Of this slice lots of people will visit on opening day/week, be underwhelmed & never visit again. Others will go, quite like it but only visit 1-2 times a year as unless you are an absolute raving arts buff, that’s more than enough for most people.
Then you have to look outside of the Wrexham fold for visitors/tourists and ask who is specifically coming to visit Wrexham town centre just to go to an art gallery? Hmm I think I’ll just travel a bit further up the road to Liverpool for the Tate and Walker galleries. I think a small number would be interested, perhaps a trickle but nothing signalling coachloads or car parks full of footfall.
So yes, call me a cynic but I think there is going to be an uphill struggle for market traders.February 13, 2018 at 9:59 am #144642
“The Butter market and lambpit street shops were knocked down”
Last time I looked, the Butter market was still there!
I am in the pro-Ty Pawb lobby, but I accept it will be an uphill struggle to generate patronage. My suggestion would be to engage children whist still at school. Some will continue to be interested in artistic matters in later life. The other thing is to be diverse in the offering. Apart from canvas type art or “craft” events use it to demonstrate some local sporting prowess or use the cinema area for showing local history or maybe theatre performances. Start a literary festival just like Hay on Wye did years ago. Maybe work with Yr Urdd to attract Welsh literature or exhibitions to town. There are national “art” exhibitions which tour the country and these should be encouraged to stop off in our town. We could work with the University or colleges of higher education to show off some of their achievements. The traders themselves might have an interest which will attract visitors. Dare I say, but even Berwyn Prison might be able to offer something (fill in your own jokes about files in cakes or escapist art etc)
Point is to try lots of different things, some will work, some won’t, but we must have a facility in town to appeal to more people and generate footfall for the traders. Or we might just as well rely on McDonald’s for our artistic stimulation.February 13, 2018 at 12:03 pm #144649
I was posting this under the Ty Pawb post but thought it important to revisit past glory.
The big draw to Wrexham was it’s Monday market on Eagles Meadow. People would visit it and walk into town.
The Butter market and lambpit street shops were knocked down and car park lost to make way for a now abandonded shop complex. The Hippodrome shut and was left to burn. That part of town is dead.
So Wrexham has lost its trade but traders are still interested in becoming marketeers in an art galary that few people are expected to visit ……
Good luck Ty Pawb I really hope you succeed against all odds.
When you say why the Ty Pawb Market will fail do you mean the Arts Hub side, the Market Stall side, or the complete venture.?
A case could be made for the Arts Hub if managed properly and within its means. The Market Stall side I believe will struggle.
I spent quite a few years in the markets, if I was to go back tomorrow I would not have a clue what to sell that would , enable me to support a wife and two kids.
Markets footfall has declined in Wrexham even in food associated stalls that once thrived.February 13, 2018 at 3:06 pm #144662
Thanks for the new thread – Wrexham.com merged all the previous threads – cynically, it reduced visible opposition to many separate aspects of the project. However, in this thread, Matt has said it the way it is. It was a high risk project from its inception. Here we go, back to the first threads – Have our Councillors or the Council got any mandate to invest in very high risk projects that will require millions in running costs throughout its (very short) lifetime? This is maladministration, during a time that the Council are always ‘bleating on’ about and implementing cuts – 99% of constituents would not have taken this high risk with our money as the Traders are not now risking theirs..
It seems that the new ‘rescue strategy’ is to buy, rent, or coerce all the property en route to Ty Pawb including the back passage, TJ’s, BHs and all the vacant shops in between. Next, they will be giving away the Market & Food concessions in Ty Pawb rent free, traders have realised this strategy, so will ‘hang out’ until the desperation gets even more desperate.
It will be worth going to the opening in April to see the Councillors coming out of the ‘back passage’ – a fitting memorial!February 13, 2018 at 4:05 pm #144663
They better get used to answering questions as these will be demanded when Ty Pawb fails. Lets hope the whole executive resigns by then. However, we can still pursue them – they have a legal responsibility, the don’t get £32K for nothing… Its back to cutting hair, cleaning windows, fixing cars, running trains etc… and possibly breaking rocks!February 13, 2018 at 4:24 pm #144670
After heading to double digit new threads on the same topic from a single forum member and others I have merged the threads.
Hopefully this will keep the avenue open for people to keep voicing opinions and the debate going on the forums, with the benefit of also being in an online / referenceable manner for the future :)
(Wrexham.com'er - email us on firstname.lastname@example.org)February 13, 2018 at 7:31 pm #144674
I am not in the anti-Ty Pawb camp. At this stage that doesn’t make much sense. We are, as they say, where we are.
I am, however, not oblivious to the immense negativity surrounding the Arts Hub and certainly think that much needs to be done to either make it successful OR if needs be, to minimise the losses.
We have had something like 3 years to work out exactly what the Arts Hub project is all about, some 3 years since WCBC took some of the “suggestions” that Quarterbridge came up with, and we should be better positioned at this stage than we appear. After all, the Welsh Assembly has picked up a big shovel, taken a pile of dosh collected in and handed it over to WCBC to spend on this building. We would have to be dumb not to be able to make a success of the project, especially when we remember that the Peoples Market was actually trading very successfully in this unit until close to the time that it closed for refurbishment.
Firstly, my logic tells me that we needed to conduct a MARKETING exercise on this unit before we moved too far in its development, determining what the nature of the Hub would be and my rationale tells me that the most likely combination to be successful would have been a mix of Arts and Crafts with the emphasis on retail. This would have allowed small local producers of A & C to dominate and the Market element would have been a natural accessory to the other. These sorts of places are popular nationwide. This would have meant the de-emphasis of “high” arts and performance, which invariably will struggle for funding and a real emphasis on businesses operating within the A & C world. Secondly, the naming of the entity, Ty Pawb, strikes me as naval gazing. The potential customer base is Welsh, Anglo-Welsh, English and other, yet we have put the economics of the brand name behind the politics.
We are a few weeks away from the opening of the Hub. If it’s successful, the whole Independent sector of Wrexham could share in the success. It is not too late for some serious fine-tuning. Much needs doing…….and I hope that the discussion moves on to constructive ideas about how to turn this potential white elephant into a successful entityFebruary 13, 2018 at 8:00 pm #144680
…and I hope that the discussion moves on to constructive ideas about how to turn this potential white elephant into a successful entity
Very well written and objective post Alun. I think the whole white elephant thing reminds me of the biggest white elephant of our time – the Millennium Dome – the whole mania behind it meant money was thrown at aspirational projects and we ended up with something they didn’t quite know what to do with – just how do you celebrate the turn of a millennium?
So of course hardly anyone visited & it flopped. Of course this left a fantastic functional venue that has seen many years of success with top international acts going to it. Perhaps we will see the refurbished People’s Market being brought back into something more useful if arts doesn’t work out.February 17, 2018 at 8:35 am #144859
So reading this tweet on Wrexham.com makes me wander.…..A full house at #Undegun again tonight. @73degreefilms premier was fantastic, as were the artworks – raising the bar each time. Props to everyone involved. There’s a great art scene here in @wrexham now – everyone’s hard work is paing off! …...why the hell are we paying millions for Ty Pawb?? Am I missing something here ??February 17, 2018 at 9:44 am #144860
Un deg Un is a ‘grassroots arts venue run by local people who understand the niche aspects of the art scene in Wrexham and crucially operates within a feeling of free spirit adapting to local artists across all sorts of disciplines including painting, pottery, music, photography, free-form – Ty Pawb is coming over as place that will cater for’professional’ type art market and be trying to attract visitors to Wrexham rather than like Un Deg Un catering for THE Locals.
The Council had a very small news release in the Wrexham Leader this week looking for Volunteers to go on their Advisory Group- this was very low key and does not seem to have been reported anywhere else – presume the Council have ‘head hunted’ YES people. It seems ludicrous that they are trying to recruit people to such a group two months from the doors open. Any reason why Wrexham.com have not covered this..
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