Budding young creatives from across Reading gathered to celebrate their achievements at an awards ceremony last week.

Reading’s Cultural Education Partnership (CEP) hosted the first annual Young People’s Reading Arts Award Celebration at South Street Arts Centre on February 6.

More than 100 parents, carers, teachers, young people and cultural partnership members attended the event for an evening of awards, talks, performances and art activities.

The event celebrated young people who had achieved an Arts Award qualification in Reading during 2018.

Arts Award is a range of unique qualifications that supports anyone aged up to 25 to grow as artists and arts leaders, inspiring them to connect with and take part in the wider arts world through taking on any art-based challenge – from fashion to digital art, pottery and poetry.

One of the groups who received awards during the evening also performed their dance routine on the night.

As part of Reading’s Cultural Education Partnership, Reading Rep Theatre worked with 57 students at Reading College to help them gain bronze and silver Arts Awards.

This saw the participants take ownership of their own artistic practice, learn more about artists who inspire them and also gave them experience of delivering workshops in local primary schools.

Cllr Sarah Hacker, Reading’s lead member for culture, heritage and recreation, and the chair of Reading’s Cultural Education Partnership, said: "The Reading Cultural Education Partnership believes that these young people should be rewarded for their tremendous efforts in gaining a nationally recognised qualification in the arts.

"I’m delighted we have been able to celebrate these achievements at this great event and I hope this will become an annual event in Reading’s cultural calendar.

"Since the partnership started in January 2016, it has helped over 1,300 young people to gain an Arts Award accreditation.

"I would like to thank all our partner organisations who have been involved in this project and have helped drive its success.

"We are also grateful for the support of Artswork, the SE Bridge organisation, in helping the partnership achieve our work with young people.

"There is great potential in Reading for access to high quality arts and culture to make a real difference to the quality of life and outcomes of children and young people and we will continue to work together to ensure that these benefits are realised."