Innocence and expression is a BBC Children in Need funded programme designed specifically to encourage young people (aged 8-18) to build their confidence, make new friends and embrace their creative sides.

This project is run on alternate Saturdays from 2-4pm.

This is the 3rd year the Innocence and Expression project has been running. Some feedback from BBC Children in need: Through this project, the children have gained confidence and pride in the work achieved, better team skills which is evident from the collaborative pieces developed and have a more aspirational outlook thanks to positive reinforcement and praise, when often the children only hear negative messages.

innocence and expression flyer



On Saturday 10th October there was an Innocence & Expression session in which the participants had the opportunity to take part in an architectural and ornamental walk in the Arboretum Park as part of Artcore’s project, Invisible Boundaries -Sharing Heritage.

Participants learned about the different species of trees and how the park has changed since it opened for the public 175 years ago. They also learned about the history of the buildings, statues and ornaments within the park, including the Florentine Boar.

After the walk the participants created some rubbings by using a variety of leaves that they had collected during the walk.

_MG_0013 _MG_0018 _MG_0019 _MG_0041 _MG_9798 _MG_9817 _MG_9855 _MG_9916 IMG_0052


The session on the 26th September involved the children using watercolour paint. Designs based on the St Thomas church past present and future renovation project were created by the participants.

20150926_153328 20150926_153348 20150926_153407 20150926_153442 20150926_153449 20150926_153458 20150926_154150


On Saturday 12th September, the first session of the new term of Innocence and Expression was conducted.

In the session, the participating children had the exciting opportunity to explore new concepts such as the edge or boundaries of what would be a picture. As a society we can often see what is held within boundaries but we never explore what is surrounding them.

The mixed age group allowed a diversity of ideas to be developed. The children were encouraged to draw their ideas on paper with the theme of the Arboretum Park and what the park meant to them and created their own boundary by painting a frame in relation to those ideas.

The painted frames were part of the Invisible Boundaries project celebrations on the 19th September, allowing people to take their selfie while ‘inside’ the frame and make a memory with the 175th anniversary celebration of Britain’s first public park.

_MG_8983 _MG_8984 _MG_8985 _MG_8988 _MG_8990 _MG_8992 _MG_8994 _MG_8995 _MG_8996 _MG_8999 _MG_9000 _MG_9001 _MG_9005 _MG_9012 _MG_9016_MG_9017 _MG_9019 _MG_9022