Bid to turn a derelict barn into an arts hub

Dreaming of a destination ... from left, the SCIP team of Sally Elford, Alice Carter and Josie Swan at South Hill Barn
Dreaming of a destination ... from left, the SCIP team of Sally Elford, Alice Carter and Josie Swan at South Hill Barn

For many years a large and picturesque barn overlooking the Seven Sisters has lain derelict. Until now …

… Now a dynamic group of artists has resolved to bring South Hill Barn on Seaford Head back to life by opening its great doors to The Green Show in August next year.

Seaford Contemporary Illustrators and Printmakers (SCIP) will be taking on a building with no water supply, no electricity and pigeons in the roof trusses, so will have to pay for mobile toilets, a generator and pest control in order to hold an event billed to be the largest creative arts show in the town’s history.

It is set to comprise new artworks inspired by the natural world and the landscape, a series of short films exploring Seaford Head Nature Reserve with Sussex Wildlife Trust, Rampion Wind Farm and Seaford’s Plastic Free campaign, plus workshops for a diverse community including children with learning difficulties.

There will also be talks from visiting lecturers covering a range of subjects including illustration, conservation and climate change.

Announcing the event at a networking group last week attended by 40 local artists, SCIP co-founder Alice Carter said: “One of the biggest challenges facing the SCIP team is the venue.

“South Hill Barn is a treasured part of the Seaford and East Sussex community, and the group is excited to be the first to host an event up there and start to breathe life into this beautiful location.

“The barn has been cared for by Seaford Town Council and is structurally sound; however it comes with great challenges as it has no electricity, running water or toilet facilities and currently houses a family of pigeons.

“Although SCIP will not be installing these facilities, using the barn does create extra expenses a ‘traditional’ venue would not.”

Co-founder Josie Swan added: “The Green Show is the largest creative arts event ever hosted in Seaford.

“To raise the funds to make this unique event happen, SCIP is asking the community to help through online crowdfunding on Just Giving.”

Alice said: “We are so excited to be launching The Green Show and we hope to make this just the first in a series of ground-breaking events for Seaford. We want this to be something the community can be proud of, which will put Seaford on the map as a creative hub.”

To learn more about The Green Show, the fund-raising campaign and to make a contribution visit www.wearescip.co.uk