A brand new gathering for the regeneration community was been launched at MIPIM yesterday. The event – Re:Fest! – will give the downtrodden community the chance to come together in a festival setting, to show their work, share their experience and expertise, and to revitalise themselves for the challenges ahead.
ReFest is not a conference. It is not a corporate gathering. It will be a festival focussing on all that is great in the regeneration sector.
While there will be a programme of speakers and panel sessions which many of the delegates will want to attend, these will be complemented by a host of interactive feature areas, and interspersed with a programme of delegate-generated content, bringing presentations on real projects from the length and breadth of the UK and beyond.
It will take place on July 17 and 18, 2013 in a real-life ‘regeneration opportunity’ – UK Regeneration’s site in Lenton, Nottingham. The site, being a former school, provides a number of ‘venues’ for display, exchange, debate and discussion. The ReFest team will programme just a small proportion of the available time and space, with the rest provided by the delegates.
ReFest will be:
• Part conference – with a programme of speeches, seminars and workshops
• Part gallery – where practitioners display posters of their projects
• Part user-generated – with events organised by delegates using the festival grounds
• Part sharing experience – where practitioners from all over the country (and world) share their learning, experience and expertise.
• 100 % uplifting and reaffirming – as well as communicating excellence in practice, and providing a forum for debate on policy, it should aim to regenerate the regeneration community itself, providing sustenance and support, and giving its people renewed energy and determination.
Workshops will debate the issues of the day, and report to the conference through the medium of interactive posters. Many of these workshops will be delegate-suggested – the programme for ReFest will be as far as possible crowdsourced, and bottom-up generated, as befits an event by the regeneration community, for the regeneration community.
Jackie Sadek, CEO of UK Regeneration said: “We need to save regeneration. The community is downtrodden, with the stuffing knocked out of them by years of zero funding and planning inertia. We want to give them back their joie de vivre by creating a platform for them to do what they do best – share and shine!”
Matthew Tucker, MD of Morgan Tucker and a Team Nottingham player said: “We’re delighted to be the founder sponsor for this innovative event. We’re committed to regeneration – done the right way – and nothing embodies that spirit more than the concept behind Re:Fest”.
“‘We really believe in the new approach to community led regeneration that is being promoted by this event and by UK Regeneration – we are keen to support Jackie on this and any other initiative they may be considering”
Ross Sturley, Principal of organiser Chart Lane, said: “We’re going to provide a framework for the regeneration community to populate. This will be a user-generated event, in the finest traditions of community festivals. To the regeneration community we say – come and join the party!”
I’m also delighted to be involved in this festival. It should be informative and fun…