Nick Ewbank Associates is an innovative consultancy firm delivering creative solutions in the fields of culture, learning, regeneration, wellbeing and social cohesion. We carry out ground-breaking research and we help organisations to develop and to achieve their goals.

Selected Projects

Everyday Creativity: Discovery Process

NEA has been jointly commissioned by two university research centres – the Centre for Arts and Wellbeing at the University of Brighton and the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health at Canterbury…

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House of Lords Select Committee on Seaside Towns

Nick Ewbank was delighted to be appointed as the Specialist Adviser to the House of Lords Select Committee on Regenerating Seaside Towns and Communities. Seaside towns are among the UK’s greatest assets, greatly loved by…

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International Ceramics Centre (Advanced Ceramics Campus)

NEA was appointed by Staffordshire University and Arts Council England to carry out a Feasibility Study and Viability Assessment for a proposed International Ceramics Centre in Stoke-on-Trent. The City is known worldwide as The Potteries…

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Up for Arts National Roll-Out: Evaluating Impact

Up for Arts is a partnership project, delivered by BBC Radio and Voluntary Arts, which stimulates engagement in creative activity among older and isolated people by working through the medium of radio and with local…

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Cultural Engagement for Wellbeing: Seed Award

At NEA we love to be at the cutting edge of research, new thinking and best practice – and to follow our passions. This has never been more the case than with the Cultural Engagement…

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A House for Essex: site acquisition

We were engaged by Alain de Botton’s Living Architecture to assist with site analysis and acquisition for their programme of commissioning world-leading architects and designers to make exceptional examples of contemporary domestic dwellings, set in…

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Strange Cargo

Strange Cargo is, according to Dr Stephen Deuchar, Director of The Art Fund, “a highly creative, deeply serious collective that is fundamentally committed to the parallel goals of making great works of art and also putting them…

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Royal Crown Derby Museum

Royal Crown Derby is widely considered to be the oldest English porcelain manufacturer, dating back 270 years to the earliest days of the Industrial Revolution, when the Midlands city of Derby was at the centre…

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Maidstone: Culture & Heritage

Despite being the county town and the largest settlement in Kent, with a rich and diverse heritage, Maidstone is not widely recognised as a cultural centre. As part of a new strategic drive to strengthen…

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Project Art Works

NEA carried out an Impact Analysis of the work of Project Art Works. This remarkable company, based in Hastings, East Sussex, transforms the lives of people with complex needs through innovative creative arts practice. Our…

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Everyone an Artist?

NEA was commissioned by East Sussex County Council to organise and present Everyone An Artist? – a symposium investigating connections between culture, society and health & wellbeing. The event took place at the De La…

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AHRC Cultural Value Report

In partnership with the internationally renowned Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health, we launched the report Cultural Value and Social Capital at the House of Commons on 16 July 2014. The report…

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De La Warr Pavilion

We undertook a ground-breaking study into the Social Capital generated by the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill. Our work helped the Pavilion prove its significance within the local community and to secure a seven…

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Adventures In Regeneration

NEA’s unique approach was developed over the course of a decade of pioneering work in Folkestone, a coastal town on the south east tip of the UK. The story of the Folkestone project is told…

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About Us

Drawing on a wealth of experience in cultural leadership, design, project management and academia, our outstanding team brings a diverse and eclectic range of skills – from advice, research and evaluation to hands-on project development and delivery via community consultation, event planning, fundraising, mentoring and the production of robust business plans. Have a look around, follow us on twitter and call or email us if you’d like to talk …

Specialisms

  • cultural visioning and planning
  • area regeneration strategies and masterplanning
  • construction briefing and project management
  • community engagement
  • festivals and events management
  • Higher Education planning and development
  • preparation of funding bids
  • third sector governance / management
  • joined-up thinking
  • evaluation
  • research

Current and Past Clients include:

  • ArtHouse Jersey
  • Arts Council England
  • Arts and Humanities Research Council
  • Blackpool Council
  • Brunel University
  • Canterbury Christ Church University
  • City University
  • Culture Action Llandudno
  • East Sussex County Council
  • Edge Hill University
  • Inspire Leisure
  • King's College London
  • Living Architecture
  • Maidstone Borough Council
  • National Centre for Creative Health
  • New York University
  • North Down Borough Council
  • Project Art Works
  • Royal Crown Derby Museum
  • Staffordshire University
  • Strange Cargo Arts Company
  • Tamsui Historical Museum, New Taipei City
  • The De La Warr Pavilion
  • The Hastings Trust
  • The House of Lords
  • The IET
  • The Roger De Haan Charitable Trust
  • The RSA
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Kent
  • Upstream Healthy Living Centre
  • Voluntary Arts / BBC Radio
  • Wakefield Council
  • Wellcome Trust

Who We Are

Dr Trish Vella-Burrows: Director of Research

Trish is Deputy Director of the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health (SDHRC) at Canterbury Christ Church University – one of the UK’s leading centres for research into the impact of engaging…

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Nick Ewbank

Nick Ewbank is one of the UK’s leading authorities on creative urban regeneration. He was the founding Director of the culture, education and regeneration charity The Creative Foundation and, with the philanthropist Roger De Haan…

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Fred Gray

Fred Gray is a researcher and writer specialising in the history and contemporary character of the Western and particularly British seaside. A social scientist and historian, he has degrees from the University of Hull and…

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Stephanie Mills

Stephanie Mills has three decades of design and development experience in architecture, urban design and independent film production. Mills has worked within interdisciplinary teams to realise a broad variety of projects in Europe, Southern Africa…

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Paul Kelly

Paul has more than 20 years experience in strategy development, project delivery and funding, with a particular focus on business planning, partnering and alternative service delivery models. Paul’s ethos is all about pragmatic innovation, essentially…

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David Powell

David’s practice brings together public agencies, regeneration bodies, community and cultural organisations to secure benefits from regeneration. His professional practice, running as DPA since 1991, has helped develop and deliver projects like QUAD, Derby’s centre…

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Latest News

Folkestone's Wellbeing Rankings

Oct 2020: it's been reported that life satisfaction figures from the ONS (pre-pandemic) show that "the area in Kent with the greatest growth and the second highest mean life satisfaction was Folkestone and Hythe, with 8.08 after scoring 7.49 the previous year". Leader of the District Council, Cllr David Monk said: "It is fantastic to see this significant jump in life satisfaction. The district's vibrant cultural scene has played a pivotal role in the increase in those looking to work, live, visit and invest, which includes a great work/life balance with its coastline, a great restaurant, cafe and street food scene, independent shops, galleries and cafes in the Creative Quarter, and attractions like the Folkestone Artworks, the Harbour Arm and Folkestone Museum." NEA is proud that its founder Nick Ewbank played such a key role in the planning and delivery of the first decade of Folkestone's regeneration.
It's always tough to find clear evidence that cultural regeneration projects work, but this ONS data seems pretty compelling to us.

Everyday Creativity Symposium 2022

NEA is delighted to be convening a symposium on Everyday Creativity for Spring 2022 - we'll be working with our friends and partners at Voluntary Arts and BBC local radio, among others, in pulling together an inclusive, engaging event that we hope will have a positive impact in the cultural sector and beyond. It's early days in the planning cycle, and if you have thoughts or ideas you'd like to contribute please do get in touch with us,

Paradigm Shift

Nick Ewbank has written an article for Arts Professional, exploring how new understandings of the processes underpinning everyday creativity can lead to a more prominent role for creativity and the arts in contributing to addressing the isolation and anxiety that so many of us are experiencing as the pandemic continues. The article calls for a rethink of how we fund and prioritise the arts, including through a renewed focus on population wellbeing and a broadening of definitions of what qualifies for public funding. The article can be accessed here:
https://www.nickewbank.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Paradigm-shift.pdf

Lockdown Stories

How can we use creative methods to collectively process some of the distressing and traumatic experiences that people have lived through as a result of lockdown? We're working jointly with partners in public health and in the cultural sector to formulate responses to this important question. Check back here for more details as they emerge.

New book coming on Well-being Data

We pleased to say that Dr Susan Oman has completed her book Understanding Well-being Data - Improving Social and Cultural Policy, Practice and Research. It's being published by Palgrave Macmillan - although it'll be a while before it hits the shelves. We're proud that the book was, in part, kickstarted by the Wellcome Trust Seed Award Project that we project managed in 2016/17 - when we commissioned Susan to carry out a literature review on cultural engagement and subjective wellbeing.

NEA Animated

Watch this 30 second animation by Cognitive Media for an overview of our approach.

Testimonials

  • “As a leading exponent of cultural regeneration, Nick Ewbank is an innovative thinker who combines an in-depth understanding of the public sector with an expert knowledge of the arts world. His great strengths are his vision and his ability to identify creative solutions to resolve difficult issues. He approaches his work with tenacity and resilience and demonstrates a capacity for strategic thinking which he harnesses to great effect.”

    Sir Roger De Haan CBE, Chairman, Creative Folkestone
  • “The work that Nick has done with the Trust has been exceptional in quality - Nick's sensitivity and intuition made what could have been a very difficult process much easier for voluntary trustees to absorb and accommodate, and his professionalism, integrity and honesty have been fundamental to the success of the project. We have been impressed with the knowledge and expertise of Nick and his Associate on this project, as well as with the creativity, innovation and good humour with which the project has been delivered.”

    Mel Bonney-Kane, Chief Executive Officer, Hastings Trust
  • “I am finding the way you work outstanding - committed, deeply efficient, pragmatic and imaginative. Thank you in general for your exceptionally efficient and intuitive grasp of everything that comes your way.”

    Alain de Botton, Living Architecture
  • “The transformation of Folkestone has been an inspiration to the Arts Council and to towns and cities across the world. Folkestone's cultural profile has been raised beyond anything I could have imagined.”

    Sally Abbott, former Executive Director, Arts Council England South East