The Arts

The cultural life in Corsham has always been a vibrant one and today the area has a thriving arts scene.

Highlights include:

• The significant Fine Art collection including Italian Old Masters at the historic Corsham Court
• The festivals organised by The Pound Arts Centre in the summer and autumn
• A thriving community arts scene involving many local people in a range of art forms
The Peacock Arts Trail

Pound Arts is a charity based in Corsham and provides opportunities for all people in Wiltshire and South Gloucestershire to experience, enjoy and engage with the Arts. Their work is characterised by variety, diversity, inventiveness, imagination, skill and social responsibility.

Pound Arts comprises of:

The Pound Arts Centre, which is the hub of Corsham's Arts offering, with three annual seasons of professional performances, film, participatory arts events and exhibitions. Facilities include rehearsal and workshop spaces, a 100-seat auditorium, a gallery space and cafe bar. The Pound also includes three studio spaces which house resident emerging visual artists. View the current Pound Arts programme.

Festivals - The Blue Sky Festival in June, a celebratory family festival, and Magic and Mayhem in November, a contemporary arts blend of illusion, glamour, laughter, oddities and imagination, both based in Corsham.

Rural Arts Touring - The rural touring scheme for Rural Arts Wiltshire (RAW) and South Gloucestershire, this scheme is one of 40 rural touring schems in the UK. Pound Arts works in partnership with volunteer promoters in up to 60 villages across the two unitary authority areas to stage around 70 professional performances and 10 participatory arts events every year.

Education and Outreach - Collaborative arts projects in Corsham and across Wiltshire, working to improve and sustain arts education and access to the arts for all ages.

Community arts thrive at The Pound, which is home to many groups, including Pound Ballet Studio, Corsham Windband Association, Corsham Arts Society and Film@The Pound.

Pound Arts is funded by Arts Council England, Wiltshire Council and Corsham Town Council along with continued support from partnerships, businesses, users of The Pound and its audiences.

Other community arts groups include Adhoc Theatre, Corsham Choral Society and Corsham Town Band. A range of artists work in small studios in the area including sculptors, painters and stained glass makers, who open their studios and exhibit their work.

As a visual arts college, Corsham School is a centre of excellence for arts learning and creativity. Through their community outreach programme, a variety of workshops for children, families and adults are run including photography, kite making and bicycle powered paintings.

Bath Spa University has returned to Corsham to establish a centre for postgraduate, masters and doctorate level study in arts and humanities. Also based in Corsham is NSEAD, the National Society for Education in Art and Design.

Creative Corsham Strategy

In 2016, the Town Council began work on its Creative Corsham Strategy.

The research included a survey and workshop where anyone working in, or with an opinion on, the Arts in Corsham was invited to share their views. The Strategy, and its associated Action Plan, are now complete and were approved by the Town Council's Community Service Committee at its meeting on 16 November 2016.

In early 2017, all those who took part in the survey and workshop will be invited to comment on the Strategy and the proposals in the Action Plan will be explored in more detail. You can download a copy of the Creative Corsham Strategy here.

Public Art Strategy

In June 2020, the Town Council approved its Public Art Strategy, based on its ambitions to have more public artworks in Corsham. The Strategy looks at Corsham's Arts connections, the priority sites for public art in the future and the Town Council's commissioning process. A copy of the Public Art Strategy can be downloaded here.