We had a great time showing at XpoNorth, Scotland’s leading creative industries conference, at the beginning of July. Dozens of you flocked to our stall to find out more about Phase 2 of Inverness Creative Academy. We loved meeting all of you to discuss taking workspace, co-working and workshop space with us, or just talking to those of you interested in the public side of the project.

Claire English – Wasps Funding and Partnerships Manager

It was also great to see Wasps tenants participating in XpoNorth. We were sat next to the stall of our fellow charity tenants Help Musicians, who have their office space with us in the Briggait in Glasgow and led a talk at XpoNorth on career longevity in the music industry. We also enjoyed seeing ceramicist Lorna Fraser, artist tenant in our Patriothall Studios in Edinburgh, talk about sustainability in her practice on her panel. Just naming a few, it’s always great to see the wide spread that the creative industries have across Scotland, and it gets us even more excited about what Inverness Creative Academy will be able to offer to the Highlands.

Proudly presenting Wasps Inverness Creative Academy

Since the opening of Phase 1, Inverness Creative Academy is already having a huge impact. On the same week of XpoNorth, the opening of Circus’ first exhibition drew in a crowd of over 100 people to see their installations in the beautifully refurbished gym hall. Circus are an artist’s collective housed in Phase 1 of Inverness Creative Academy, whose aim is to promote contemporary art in the Highlands. We are working alongside them through our Arts Enterprise Programme, and supporting them through offering them use of the gym hall.

Willie Cameron, Iain Hamilton and Stuart Cosgrove showing their support for Inverness Creative Academy

Phase 2 of Inverness Creative Academy will be the creative industries building and the most significant phase of this £5.5m project overall. Phase 2 will not only provide around 80 workspaces for creative industries and creative social enterprises, but will also open up this beautiful B-listed building to the public for the first time, with a public café and exhibition space in the grand assembly hall.

During XpoNorth we conducted tours of the building, taking people first around the completed Phase 1 and inside the now fully occupied artists’ studios, before showing them Phase 2 in its current state. We took registers of interest from many creative individuals and organisations looking to rent space with us in Phase 2 of Inverness Creative Academy. Meeting the people that will be our future tenants on completion of Phase 2 just makes us more excited about making this creative hub a reality.

The Assembly Hall of Phase 2 in its current state

If you would like to take a space in this new, inspiring facility and creative hub, you can register interest in a space in Phase 2 of Inverness Creative Academy: invernesscreativeacademy.org.uk/registerinterest. Once we announce the application process, those who have registered interest will be the first to hear. 

We are still fundraising for Phase 2 of Inverness Creative Academy. If you are interested in supporting this project, and would like to discuss making a donation or business sponsorship in more details please contact Claire English, Wasps’ Funding and Partnerships Manager on 0141 553 5890 or email claire@waspsstudios.org.uk. A number of options for crediting your donation within the development can be considered.

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