Common Ground was founded in 1998 as an arts development organisation. The inspiration for setting up Common Ground came from research commissioned by the Canal Communities Partnership, which explored the potential role of arts and culture in urban community regeneration.

Common Ground began with one worker and the support and vision of a number of individuals with experience of arts and community development at local and national level.
In the early years, Common Ground built relationships with local community groups in order to respond to local needs. We sought to develop a way of working that both engaged with the community and supported artists with an interest in locating their practice in that community. We experimented with processes that included community based artist’s residencies, delivering arts training and capacity building with youth leaders and community workers, and providing mentoring opportunities for artists.
Today, we continue our work in the community through a range of arts programmes and we support artists in sharing the knowledge and experience of their practice with their work with communities.

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