Share this project

Done

Share this project

Done
On 18 April a notable public event returns to Victoria Hall, Saltaire after 50 years. Floristry students are working to make it shine.
On 18 April a notable public event returns to Victoria Hall, Saltaire after 50 years. Floristry students are working to make it shine.
36 backers pledged £1,100 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

Saltaire Stories: Come to the Conversazione! project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound

£1,100

36

Creating a Conversazione in Saltaire

Saltaire is a workers' village built around a textile mill in West Yorkshire. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Visitors love coming here, and it’s a fascinating place to live. Have a look at www.saltairevillage.info  

Leeds & Liverpool canal at Saltaire
Leeds & Liverpool canal at Saltaire

Within these few streets history has been made, and people come to learn every day. Among local residents and tourists, students attend Shipley College. Volunteers produce a wide range of events, including World Heritage Weekend in April, organised by Saltaire Stories. Follow our progress at www.facebook.com/saltairestories

Saltaire Stories/World Heritage Weekend working group
Saltaire Stories/World Heritage Weekend working group

This year we are aiming high, to revive the conversazione. First held in 1878, this event was a regular feature at Victoria Hall until 1964. Conversazione means a social gathering focussed on ideas - a chance for people to engage with history, art and innovation. 

Victoria Hall, at the heart of Saltaire since 1871
Victoria Hall, at the heart of Saltaire since 1871

We have a great set of activities lined up, but can you help us with the "wow" factor? Conversaziones were known for beautiful decorations, and we have to meet that expectation.   If we can raise the money for materials, College floristry students will use their skills to make Victoria Hall glow with flowers and greenery.

Floristry students & staff
Floristry students & staff

The decorations we want to create are:

  • two large urns on the stage 
  • balcony rings and swagging 
  • 16 table and window sill arrangements
  • a superb mannequin in the Victoria Hall foyer

Between now and 18th April we have to communicate the attraction of this unique event as widely as possible.  As well as floristry materials, we need money for our printed programme.  It's vital to produce and circulate this in advance.

World Heritage Weekend 2013 programme
World Heritage Weekend 2013 programme

Attending a conversazione used to be expensive. This year it will be free entry from 10am-4pm for visitors of all ages to explore history, art, science and everyday uses of technology from knitting to bicycle repair.

It’s not an exhibition or a market, but a day to share ideas and skills. At the first conversazione in 1878, the Bell telephone caused a sensation – the equivalent we’ve found for 2015 is a 3-D printer and scanner!

Stories and items from the Saltaire Archive will stimulate conversation between visitors, villagers and descendants of mill owners.  For the evening, Eddie Lawler (called the Bard of Saltaire) has written dramatic sketches to be followed by a dance to the Sultans of Swing.

Reaching - or exceeding - our Kickstarter target will allow us to create the essential decorations and publicity. Hundreds of people who've wondered what a conversazione is all about will walk into Victoria Hall and take part. 

If you can, please Come to the Conversazione!  As a World Heritage Site, Saltaire belongs to you - not just on 18th April, but all year round.    

Donations will be very gratefully received by our Saltaire Stories/World Heritage Weekend working group on behalf of the newly-formed Saltaire World Heritage Education Association (UK charity no.1158756).  

Risks and challenges

Good communication with the many individuals and organisations contributing to this community initiative is a priority.

There's always a risk of glitches on the day: in 1878 the plan to demonstrate electricity didn't work!

Bad weather could affect attendance. We'll ask the Travel & Tourism students who will be welcoming visitors to be extra friendly if it's raining.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £4 or more About $6

    Your name included on our Roll of Honour visible all day and evening at the Conversazione, and then added to the Saltaire Archive (unless you want to remain anonymous).

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    8 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge £9 or more About $14

    A copy of the four-sided World Heritage Weekend programme autographed by four members of our working group. If you send a comment on "why Saltaire matters to me", it can be displayed at the Conversazione and on www.saltairevillage.info

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 2 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge £15 or more About $23

    For drama lovers: an autographed copy of Eddie Lawler's script for his dramatic sketches "Saltaire: Past, Present & Future" - to be performed on 18th April at Victoria Hall as part of "An Evening's Entertainment". Script posted to you or available to collect in the week after the performance.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 1 backer
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £20 or more About $31

    A musical number dedicated to you - or to someone of your choice - by the Sultans of Swing during the Conversazione dance 9-11.30 pm on 18th April (a great option for someone unable to attend to be present in spirit).

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 1 backer
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £25 or more About $38

    One of the elegant table decorations (excluding vase) created by our floristry students - available to collect at the end of the Conversazione dance on 18th April, or on Sunday 19th.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 3 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About $46

    Visit the bell tower! Be one of six guests for a special visit to the splendid Italianate tower of Saltaire United Reformed Church on 18th April at midday. Climb 64 steps to the ringing room and higher by ladder to the belfry to see the six bells and the view over Saltaire. Meet the local team and visiting ringers gathered to ring for the Conversazione. Hear the special history of ringing at Saltaire, watch a demonstration and have a go at ringing a bell yourself.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 2 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £40 or more About $61

    A personal tour of Saltaire for up to four people and afternoon tea in our village house with two members of the working group. Weekday or weekend date (after World Heritage Weekend!) can be arranged.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 1 backer
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge £50 or more About $77

    "An Evening's Entertainment" on 18th April:
    Two tickets with reserved seats for the 7.30 pm performance of Eddie Lawler's "Saltaire: Past, Present & Future". A musical number dedicated to you (or someone of your choice) by the Sultans of Swing during the Conversazione dance 9-11.30 pm.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 2 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (29 days)