How Renew Newcastle projects have evolved

Renew Newcastle is limited in what it can do and all projects are effectively temporary. As Renew Newcastle does not promise access to a permanent subsidised space, the main thing it offers is a chance to test out a new idea or to try something without a lot of risk attached. Many projects - such as short-term exhibitions and events - are only intended to be short term in any case.

And not all projects will succeed. There is an element of chance about which ones are there for the long term or not, as it depends in most cases on the vagaries of the commercial property markets.

By the the first year, some Renew Newcastle projects had been there for nearly a year and look like continuing indefinitely; some had closed; others have lost access to subsidised spaces after a period of months as new tenants have moved in; and one had moved on to paying commercial rent.

Other projects had evolved: one shop owner had long enough to realise that the shop they had opened was not successful but the classes that they were running from there were. After several months they decided to close the shop and continue with the classes from another Renew Newcastle venue.

Renew Newcastle's aim is to give projects long enough to determine if what they are doing is viable. Experience shows that realising that something isn't viable in a way that doesn't cost a lot can be highly valuable to fledging creative initiatives.