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The Sheffield culture guide written by in-the-know locals

Sheffield Creative Guild

Sheffield Creative Guild was founded in 2016 and is now made up of over 300 artists and makers of all persuasions. A professional membership organisation for creatives living and working in the city, the Guild connects, supports and promotes their members and the wider creative sector.

Their website acts as a directory of creativity in the city, while their social events help members make these connections in real life. From practical workshops to one-to-one sessions with industry experts to regular networking events, they’re always looking for ways to provide their members with opportunities to make new connections and learn new skills.

There are a number of Sheffield Creative Guild membership options – individual membership is perfect for freelancers working in the city; Friends of the Guild is a great way for organisations to show their support for Sheffield’s creative sector; or if you just want a taster, you can now sign up for a free profile in their online directory.

How would you describe your work?
On a daily basis we’re about supporting our members and sharing opportunities and news with them. Some days we act as a bit of a support network, other days we’re out there lobbying or hunting down opportunities. There’s always a lot of stuff going on behind the scenes that doesn’t necessarily go out in our newsletters or social media. Everyone who works for the Guild is a creative themselves so we understand the challenges of working in this world – we just want to make life easier for our members.

What inspires you?
When we see all the incredible work and projects being initiated by our members we realise what an incredible city we live in and how lucky we are to be at the centre of this bustling community of makers. When we see all of this stuff being produced on a daily basis we’re inspired to do all we can to ensure it finds an audience and gets the notoriety it deserves.

What’s your workspace like?
In the autumn of 2019 we got the keys to The Workshop, our new space in Orchard Square, which houses an event space and our office. We just had time to host a launch party in early 2020 before the first UK lockdown hit but the plan is to use the space to host all our own events plus showcase members’ work through gigs, screenings, talks and exhibitions.

What do you love about Sheffield?
Where do we start? This has always felt like a very special city, a place where people support one another rather than try to clamber over each other for opportunity. We’re a hotbed of independent stores, eateries and creators all with uniquely Sheffield voices. We’re a city bursting with potential – there’s an intangible quality to the work and people coming out of Sheffield, it feels good to be part of such a special place.

What would you do to improve the city?
Everyone here seems to say this but we need to get better at shouting about all the things we do and create. Manchester and Leeds are highly skilled at blowing their own trumpets (and there’s no shame in that!) but they’ve got nothing that we don’t have. We want the city to be recognised as the creative jewel that it is both nationally and internationally.

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