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Huntingdon & St Neots

FUTURE TAKEOVER 24-26 January 2019 

Collusion and the St Neots Smart Place initiative present FUTURE TAKEOVER, an event over three days exploring the long-term growth of St Neots and its creative sector through ambitious thinking. The events take place at the Arts & Soul cafe. Click on the title of the events below to BOOK NOW. 

  • Thursday 24 January, 6.30 - 9pm - CREATIVE ST NEOTS: A bold way forward for the creative sector. This session with explore the future development of the cultural and creative industries sector in the town by considering opportunities for growth, the strength of the current industry, how to develop successful and dynamic workspaces, and future sector skills needs - not just the immediate future but in 20-30 years. We will be challenging everyone to think a little bit bigger! Speakers include cultural strategist and producer Sherry Dobbin and Managing Director of the Bradfield Centre James Parton, plus a film about The Neotists created by Christian Payne and Adrian Storey. Plus there will be free pizza and cake to help your creative thinking!! >>> Click on the event title to book and find out more. 

  • Friday 25 January, 6.30 - 9pm - IF ST NEOTS WERE SIM CITY: Town planning with a twist:  This session will explore the vision for the expansion of  the town and its long term future in a holistic way,  importantly considering how you the public can help to drive this change. It will look at the role technology can play in creating a 'smart' market town, enabling citizens to have an impact on quality of life issues such as air quality. Speakers will address the future of transport, public services and market town living. Plus there will be free pizza and cake to help your creative thinking!! Speakers include Andrew Chetty, Partner at Umbrellium, Prof. John Miles, future transport researcher from the University of Cambridge, and John Taylor, Assistant Director of Huntingdonshire District Council. We'll also be hearing from a young person living in St Neots about the ideas they and their friends have for the town  >>> Click on the event title to book and find out more. 

  • Saturday 26 January, 10.30am - 3pm - FUTURE TOWN FAIR: A drop in event for all the family (no tickets required) with talks and an ideas lounge, workshops including Roblox St Neots and digital making, a maker fair featuring creatives living and working locally, 3D projection and virtual reality gaming and creating. >>> No need to book - just come along on the day!  

The Future Takeover is supported by The Neotists, Smart PlacesArts Council England and the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority. It supports the ambitions outlined in the Local Plan and Masterplan for St Neots and seeks to identify ambitious new thinking in the delivery of a creative place where people want to live, work and play, both now and 20-30 years in the future. 



In Huntingdon, on 18 May 2018, we developed and trialed a new model for creative and cultural industries support and networking: Maker Takeover,  a day-into-evening event held at the fabulous, brand new iMET centre at Alconbury Weald.

Maker Takeover aims to be perfect for SMEs, creative businesses, innovators, tech people, artists and those interested in finding out about leading-edge technologies. Collusion events are informal, creative and aimed at showing off the region's rich talent across art and technology. As well as talks and workshops, the maker fair model allows creatives to explore exciting and new virtual reality, augmented reality, smart cities data and artist innovation projects. As day shifts into night delicious food and a series of extraordinary creative digital performances take centre stage.

Over 70 people from across arts, tech, and innovation joined us at iMet for a day of art, music, performance, virtual reality, and art and tech projects from three of Collusion’s R&D Challenges. Throughout the day, we enjoyed exploring projects and experiences from the following contributors:

Smart CambridgeVAR ClubSteve UptonKieran SteelsAirborne DronesIotic LabsDepartment of Difficult SpacesHenry DriverPayne HurtOne to One Developement TrustInstallation RequiredAdrian StoreyLaicaMiri KatGraham Dunning

Photos by Matthew Usher


Feedback from audiences and participants confirm that the first Maker Takeover was a success. Audiences rated the project highly (average 81%) making comments such as:  Amazing, phenomenal, unique,” “was unsure what to expect, but what I saw was truly innovative and inspiring,” “I want to come to something like this again. Whilst the event predominantly attracted people who usually take part in the arts (85% of audiences surveyed usually go to an arts event at least every few months), it also attracted non-arts attenders (15%, once a year or less). Most people traveled to Alconbury Weald to see the project, with 65% coming from more than 10 miles away. Participants also rated the project highly: 94% valued taking part in it; 92% said it had potential to inspire other artists and artforms; 91% thought it connected them with people working in different fields; 90% considered it was well-organised; 89% would like to come to something like this again. Additionally, the project achieved wide reach via Collusion’s social media channels including Twitter (90k+), Facebook (91k), Meetup and Instagram with people sharing comments and photos.


Our fantastic partners are;





Media coverage

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