Our Stories

The Why and The What and The Who

A selection of articles which tell the ArtsLink story. 

2018 – 2019 What did we do?

We had a busy year from April 2018 to March 2019:

  • 2395 people engaged with ArtsLink activities
  • 1262 hours of activity were delivered  (that averages at 3.5 hours for every day of the year!)
  • 1002 hours of help was given by our wonderful volunteers
  • 39 different types of activity to suit different needs were delivered
  • £115,000+ of economic benefit was put back into the local community through employment opportunities, venue hire and spend with local businesses

Numbers on their own can seem a little cold, so it is important to remember that all the above tell the story of real people engaging, developing, enjoying, sharing and gaining support through ArtsLink activities.

Arts Link was born in 1982

The Charity was first registered in 1982 under the name of Sherborne Professional Arts and Craft Association . The object was ‘ to advance the aesthetic education of the inhabitants of Sherborne and neighbourhood to provide facilities in the interest of social welfare for the recreation and other leisure time occupation of the said inhabitants and in particular those who have need of such facilities by reason of their age, youth or disability with the object of improving their conditions of life.’ After a number of name changes the charity we know today became Sherborne Arts Link in July 1999.

After 4 decades of delivering creative activities ArtsLink is looking forward to the future and will use all it’s experience and knowledge to continue to flourish and support people.

Youth Theatre Takes the Lead

Every summer from 2012 – 2017 ArtsLink worked with Actiontrack Performance Company to deliver a week long immersive theatre experience for 11 – 18 year olds. Each year, starting from scratch, the group worked on ideas, wrote song lyrics, choreographed dances, developed, played and sang songs, developed the script, made costumes and props, rehearsed and finally delivered an amazing show on the Friday night which included six Acts and lasted for over one hour. This is a wonderful example of team work, creative thinking, collaboration, resourcefulness, and exploring talent which produced many positive outcomes for those taking part including new friendships, increased confidence and a platform for expression. With more funding we could run these weeks again.

Achievements of the ArtsLink TakepArt project 2011-2016

Funded by the National Lottery and working with children, young people and families this project exceeded it’s targets and made a real difference. It:

• Participants self-confidence and self-esteem improved

• Nervous young people became performers

• Risk taking behaviours were reduced

• School attendance improved, and so did exam results

• Increased happiness was expressed

• New friendships were made

• Talents were celebrated and a sense of pride expressed

• New skills were acquired

• Family and community relationships were improved

A full project report can be downloaded here.

The Interns

In both 2015 and 2016 two young adults were employed as Art Assistants on 6 month paid Internships. Both moved into full time permanent employment as a result of the experience and skills they gained during their time with Arts Link. “Every step of the way I have felt supported by everyone and it is because of this support network that I have left with such positive feelings and result”. Funded by the National Lottery TakepArt project Arts Link was delighted to provide these opportunities alongside many hours of voluntary work experience for many other young people.

“I can’t believe how proud it made me seeing my work on display: I never thought I could do that”


“The class is encouraging, informative, it is a joy to be here”


“Before coming to dance I couldn’t stand, but now I can and find standing and walking easier”

ArtsLink Fizz: Parkinsons Dance

“It made me realise I can still do things that I thought I couldn’t do. It just pushes you”.

ArtsLink Fizz: Art for Memory

“Thank you for an excellent and challenging course”


“it makes you do it at home as well, it inspires you to do what you wouldn’t normally do at home”. “I painted all the garden furniture!”

ArtsLink Fizz: Art for Parents

“The class was helpful and fun. I was really, really happy”

ArtsLink Course Participant

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Sherborne Arts Link Ltd      Registered Charity no. 1007680      Company no. 2471382