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The Waiting Room Colchester

The Waiting Room project was an empty unused bus station waiting room in a run down area of St Botolph’s – a building that once served as the heart beat of Colchester Town Centre. Utilising the space to test new ideas and alternative community-led facilities and services, under the banner of ‘St Botolph’s,’ Colchester will be reinvigorated cultural activities.

The Waiting RoomAt The Waiting Room, you’ll find the first community managed ‘give-get’ library in Essex which works on the basis that those who access it also contribute to it. It will start its life by hosting a history archive and an online directory of local crafters, designers, hackers and makers. This will be a place where you can barter and acquire new skills (for some serious fun), share your own know-how, publish your ideas, collaborate, start a new business or explore a new career.

The Waiting Room is home to two disused kiosks, formerly a newsagent and a left luggage centre serving the bus station. Business incubation and product presentation spaces will be provided for local makers. Kiosk 1 will be an artists/makers shop providing a dedicated selling and presentation space for new and established Artists/Makers. Kiosk 2 will be available for 1-week to 3-month residencies to explore new ways of promoting and presenting skills, craft and making. This could be a short-term shop or show, a talk, film screening, artist residency, series of workshops, etc.

Artists, makers, thinkers and talkers from the general public, local residents and neighbouring businesses are invited to submit proposals to use the Waiting Room space. Ideas that help to develop the town’s cultural heritage and creative identity and/or celebrate St Botolph’s Quarter will be prioritised. Proposals can include talks, lectures, discussions, exhibitions, performance, demonstrations, screenings, workshops or whatever you feel is appropriate.

The Street with No Name (The Old Bus Station off Queen Street) Colchester CO1 2PQ

Phone 01206574147

Watershed Studio

Watershed StudioWatershed Studio are now celebrating our 17th birthday! It’s hard to believe that the small farm diversification project that we started to plan over sixteen years ago has turned into a thriving and successful art venue with a proven reputation for top quality courses and hospitality. Watershed Studio now attract some of the country’s best tutors and the atmosphere is buzzy and very creative. Students come from all over the UK and even from as far away as Australia on occasions. I feel truly blessed to play host to these vibrant and stimulating days and am delighted to share this lovely place where we live and work in with our visitors.

At Watershed we hold a wide variety of art workshops throughout the year. We specialise on single and two day courses, priding ourselves on good quality, professional but affordable painting breaks. We are very lucky to have such a great team of tutors who teach here and we try to cover most media and cater for all abilities.


Watershed Studio St Clere’s Hall Lane, St Osyth, Clacton on Sea, Essex, CO16 8RX Tel: 01255 820466
About Us|Courses & Tutors|Tutor’s Gallery
Contact Us|How to Book|How to Find Us|Accommodation|Links|Demonstrators

Essex Network of Artists Studios

ENAS logo_large Essex Network of Artists’ Studios (ENAS) is a new support and development initiative for artists and studios across the county. ENAS is an initial two-year pilot programme (2014- 2016) funded by Essex County Council, firstsite and Arts Council England. With input from these organisations as well as consultation and support from eight ‘foundation’ studios, ENAS is a network for artists, for studios, for the public and for Essex.

ENAS will:

  • Increase artistic excellence by encouraging creative dialogue between studios through collaborative commissioning and engagement programmes, and providing a range of creative professional development opportunities including peer-to-peer review.
  • Raise the profile of studios in Essex through a range of co-ordinated networking events, open studios and exhibitions. Working with further education institutions in the region, ENAS will promote the benefits of studio practice for emerging artists.
  • Increase Essex’s reputation as a culturally vibrant county, known for its innovative work and recognised for best practise through making links and partnerships with other national and regional arts organisations.
  • Enable studios to thrive by providing a forum for studios and artists to share ideas, resources and opportunities and signposting of information.
  • Develop and broaden audiences and professional and peer networks, encouraging more people to engage with Essex studios through umbrella marketing campaigns, reaching new regional audiences. ENAS aims to link curators, buyers and other artists and studio groups working nationally directly with Essex artists, as well as provide opportunities for studios and artists to raise their profiles online.
  • Increase business resilience through becoming a pivotal resource for artists and those looking for space, as well as landlords wanting to lease vacant premises.
  • Ensure long term sustainability of the network, through exploring different constitutional models. Foundation studios will benefit from business ‘health checks’ which identify and fund key priorities for these studios which contribute to their longer term security.

Essex Network of Artists’ Studios is an initiative that works with studios, but does not have a permanent base. ENAS is hosted by both:

Firstsite  Lewis Gardens  High Street  Colchester  CO1 1JH

Essex Records Office Wharf Road, Chelmsford, CM2 6YT