Media Release: Huntly scoops £100,000 award at Creative Place Awards 2013

Creative Place Awards 2013
Recognising and celebrating creativity across
Scotland’s smaller communities

HUNTLY scoops £100,000 award to enhance
and promote creative activity in 2013.

Winners announced today, Wed 23 Jan, at an Awards Ceremony: The Byre Theatre, St Andrews

TODAY, Wednesday 23 January 2013, Creative Scotland announced the winners of the country’s Creative Place Awards.

Huntly received the cash award of £100,000 in the category for places with up to 10,000 residents.

Huntly has developed world-wide creative community links through its ‘Town is the Venue’ programme. Several projects, including the town re-branding, have been led by artists initiatives involving the community. The Creative Places Award will enable Huntly to create a roaming initiative, ‘Walks of Life’, bringing together physical walking initiatives with creative and cultural opportunities.

In addition, over three years, including the Year of Natural Scotland and Homecoming Scotland, local arts groups and individual artists will be able to collaborate on a new initiative ‘Hospitality in Huntly and District’.

Now in its second year, the Awards were established to celebrate and recognise the hard work and imagination that contributes to the rich cultural life of a community, as well as its social and economic well-being.

The initiative focuses on creative programmes in areas outwith Scotland’s main cities.

The 2013 Creative Place Award winners are:
For places with up to 2,500 residents (£50,000), the winner is: Pathhead
For places with up to 10,000 residents (£100k), the winner is: Huntly
Places with up to 100,000 residents (£150k), the winner is: Kilmarnock

Representatives from the three communities received the awards at a ceremony hosted by broadcaster, Dougie Vipond, at The Byre Theatre, St Andrews.

On winning the award Claudia Zeiske, director of Deveron Arts, said: “The “Creative Place Award will mean that we are able to roll out a programme of walking and art activities in the coming months that will build on our previous projects, help the town to increase its profile as a cultural and outdoor tourism destination and the town’s residents to address certain health issues through the medium of walking.”

Iain Munro, director of Creative Development for Creative Scotland, said:  “Huntly is a fantastic example of how embedding arts and culture within the foundation of a community strengthens and improves people’s lives, impacting the social and economic wellbeing of the community.

“The awards celebrate how arts and creativity can promote the identity and character of a place. Congratulations to all the winners and shortlisted places. The creative vitality and energy demonstrated in this year’s shortlist is extremely impressive.”

Derek Mackay MSP, Minister for Local Government and Planning, who attended the Award ceremony, said: “The Creative Place Awards provide inspiration for our people and visitors by encouraging and promoting the exceptional creative programmes that are taking place in towns, villages and communities across the country.

“Culture really can be an important catalyst for economic development and a powerful force for regeneration.

“As well as attracting tourists and inward investment – creative and cultural activity helps to support and shape our communities and places – fostering and reinforcing people’s sense of identity and community cohesion. I congratulate the winners of today’s awards.”

The awards were hosted in St Andrews, winner of the 2012 Creative Place Award for places with up to 100,000 residents.

Jacqueline McKay, former chief executive at the Byre Theatre (part of the team who submitted the Creative Place Award bid in 2012), said: “The Creative Place Award has provided a real focus for the arts in St Andrews. It has brought festivals together to work in partnership and better tell our creative stories with enhanced impact.

“We now have a Creative Hub that projects and festivals can work out of, and we’ve attracted additional support for our year round calendar of projects. Importantly, we’ve established new opportunities to collaborate with the business and tourism community and are confident that this way of working is here to stay.”

Alan Tricker, the Byre Theatre’s current chief executive, said: “Being a recipient of the Creative Place Award has been tremendous for the Byre Theatre and St Andrews.

“We have been able to develop our relationship with local festivals, create a Festivals Office to help sustain them in the future, and lastly to put on a stunning performance of MacPherson’s Rant as part of the St Andrews Festival.

“Having the 2013 Awards ceremony at the Byre closes the circle for us. It is the end of a successful and vibrant year, and the chance to show our wonderful theatre to the 2013 recipients. We wish them all success in their endeavours.”

The application process for the next awards in 2014 will open in spring 2013, with an autumn deadline.  Information about the application process can be found here:

For more information about the Creative Place Awards visit:


Notes to editors:

1.    Creative Scotland is the national lead and development agency for the arts, screen and creative industries.
2.    The Creative Place Awards aim to celebrate the value of creativity to the social and economic wellbeing of smaller communities across Scotland, and to reward the hard work and imagination of such places. Shortlisted nominees were selected for the wide involvement of the whole community, as well as the creativity of their existing plans. Category winners receive a cash award enabling them to enhance their activity further. The initiative focuses on creative programmes in areas outwith Scotland’s main cities.
3.    This is the second year of the awards, which will run until 2014. The Awards were originally launched as part of the Year of Creative Scotland 2012, a Scottish Government led initiative and a year-long celebration of Scotland’s cultural and creative strengths.  The awards are a partnership between EventScotland, VisitScotland, Creative Scotland and the Herald.
4.    There are three award categories:
•    For places with up to 2,500 residents (cash award:£50,000)
•    For places with up to 10,000 residents (cash award:£100k)
•    For places with up to 100,000 residents (cash award:£150K)
5.     The Creative Places Awards judging panel was made up of individuals with expertise across the arts, media, tourism and community development including: Marie Christie, international events director, Culture, EventScotland; Iain Munro, director of Creative Development, Creative Scotland (chair of Jury panel); Janice Forsyth, broadcaster; Pat Kane, writer, musician and activist; Fiona Logan, CEO Loch Lomond & the Trossachs National Park and Andy Milne, CEO, SURF – Scotland’s Independent Regeneration Network.
6.    The application process for the next awards in 2014 will open in spring of 2013, with an autumn deadline. Information about the application process can be found:
7.    For further information about the 2013 shortlisted and winning places, please visit:
8.    For more on the winners of the 2012 awards please visit:
9.    To join the conversation on Twitter, use the hashtag #creativeplace

Media Contact
Wendy Grannon
Media Relations Manager, Creative Scotland
M: 07916 137632

Leslie Booth,
Deveron Arts PR
New Century PR
T: 07799414474

MEDIA RELEASE posted by Creative Scotland. You too can post media releases (aka press releases) on For more information, email here.

Contact: Sophie Bambrough
Phone: 01315230015