The Fish Factory Art Space in Penryn hosted a week of free workshops this month showcasing culture, arts and crafts in Cornwall.

Titled ‘The School of Fish’ the series of events marked the Fish Factory’s major return to hosting creative workshops after a long succession of lock downs.

The workshops took place from July 1-12 at the studio in Commercial Road and were made possible by Culture Recovery funding from Arts Council England.

There was an array of in-person and digital workshops, showcasing a broad range of activities varying from printmaking, singing and songwriting to mental well-being and weaving wool. The workshops were an example of all the creativity Cornwall has to offer, with one workshop even specialising in flint-knapping, the ancient tool-making skill of the Stone Age.

The workshop participants developed new, creative and often unconventional skills, whilst connecting with a wide community of artists and makers.

"It was a brilliant opportunity for the Cornish community to reconnect post-lockdown in a hands-on way whilst safely engaging with others," a spokesperson for the fish factory said.

"The series of events were a huge success, with tickets quickly selling out and many workshop leaders had to organise a second round of work-shops due to high demand and popularity. The staff at the Fish Factory Arts asked the participants to write down their feedback and were delighted with the positive response."

"One participant wrote that the workshop was 'a wonderful, relaxed and inspiring couple of hours. So lovely to be around others again and sharing ideas and experience'. Another person noted 'Thank you once again for providing opportunities to help myself and others with their mental health'.

"It’s now more important than ever to share, express and cultivate creativity in the community while maintaining an awareness of mental health and wellbeing, hence the importance of the Culture Recovery Fund. Although ‘School of Fish’ has come to a close, The Fish Factory Art Space will facilitate many more events, workshops and exhibitions with exciting projects lined up for the coming weeks."

The Fish Factory Arts CIC is a multi-function arts space consisting of 22 artist work spaces, a gallery, cafe and a multi-use event space. It brings together people of all ages and from all walks of life in a vibrant artistic community. Photography by Sophie Matthews.