Young arts leaders to bring the rich heritage of Winterbourne House alive through three original performances

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Birmingham creative training enterprise Fourth Wall has won National Lottery support to help train young cultural leaders of the future through researching the archives of Winterbourne House and Garden in Edgbaston, Birmingham.

Twelve young people aged 17 to 25 are being recruited to create and present ‘Within These Four Walls’. The three theatre performances on the themes of Leaders of the Past, Women’s Education and Communication will be presented at Winterbourne in September.

During the project Fourth Wall will train the participants to run the Heritage Lottery funded project at Winterbourne House and Garden.  Working from a rehearsal base in Northfield they will recruit a group of young performers and with them research the Nettlefold family who built the Arts and Crafts House in 1903. The young people will explore the contrast between the house and the Moor Pool estate in Harborne that influential town planner John Nettlefold helped develop, as well as the Back to Back slum housing in Birmingham city centre, which he helped to clear.

Fourth Wall trains young people through theatre. It was set up by University of Birmingham graduate Daniel Bridgwater, whose work with young people was recognised last week by Prime Minister Teresa May at an event in Downing Street.

Winterbourne House and Garden is one of the best surviving examples of an Edwardian Arts and Crafts suburban villa and gardens, located on the University of Birmingham’s Edgbaston campus. Built for the Nettlefold family it houses two floors of exhibition rooms highlighting the lives of the family together with a remarkable collection of magic lanterns and early printing presses. The Grade II listed garden is home to a beautiful walled garden and glasshouses.

Winterbourne House and garden is owned and operated by the University of Birmingham and is open to the public daily www.winterbourne.org.uk.