Group for Arts in Swilly (GAS) was established in 2003 by local people in partnership with local schools,youth centres and community members as a means of increasing cultural opportunities and activities for the residents of North Prospect (also known as Swilly). Activities have included arts and crafts, dance, drama and music including jazz, hip hop African Drumming and rapp. Outside trips have included a visit to the Minack Theatre, and outdoor sculpture events in local woods and on beaches.
North Prospect in Plymouth is an estate of 1,600 houses (65000 people) that was constructed in the 1920s and 1930s. Major dockyard contraction in the 1980s had a devastating impact on the estate which, at one point, was headlined the worst estate in England. Currently the estate is undergoing major regeneration and some disruption.GAS wants to address current needs of local people by offering exciting activities for them to explore while adjusting to regeneration and renewal.
GAS activites have helped to engage the imagination, inventiveness and curiosity of young people in North Prospect, teaching them new skills, increasing their ability and giving them self-confidence. They will build relationships and share experiences, improving their motivation and aspirations. A recent Heritage project Swilly at War encouraged old and young to share memories of life in North prospect in WWII, improving intergenerational skills and building bridges between young and old.