Canalside


The graffiti covered walls of brick, the rear of countless factories and warehouses bear testament to the decay of the regions economic base. Young men and women whose hands would have been busy with the making, the shaping, the forging of metal, the shoveling of coal for the furnaces, the toil and grind of the manufacturing process, stand, spray can in hand forging a new creative outlet, a new way to express themselves. Long gone the productive base that gave the World its power, it’s weapons, its currency, the industrial powerhouse that drove an empire.

The schools still strive to turn out productive souls, boys and girls to labour at jobs that no longer exist, destined to join the cue at the jobcentre, no longer the 1 in 10 of my youth but now a 1 in 4, a generation thrown away for want of the right skills, the right ideas, the right inspiration. If only we knew what to do for the best, to rejuvenate and invigorate a region whos talents are limited only by its imagination. Yet we do. We see it in the street art, the music, the performers, if only we dared to look beyond the hoodies and the attitude…

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