Young People's Charter for Arts and Culture

Young People’s Charter for Arts and Culture

Media relations and thought leadership campaign to promote a UK first youth arts charter

NE-Generation was the Legacy Trust UK regional programme for the North East.

Its role was to create a lasting impact from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games by funding ideas and local talent to inspire creativity across the UK.

The programme team learned lots about joining cultural organisations and young people together to harness their creativity and ideas and had the idea of producing the UK’s first-ever Young People’s Charter for Arts and Culture.

Funding cuts

The campaign coincided with a negative outlook for the arts industry nationally as government cuts and austerity measures hit both the public and private sector hard.

In Newcastle, the city council axed 100% of its funding for the arts and culture – at the exact moment NE-Generation sought to persuade organisations to invest in culture and adopt the Young People’s Charter for Arts and Culture.


  • Raise awareness of the YPCAC in the regional (North East) and national arts & cultural press – and position it as nationally significant achievement
  • Achieve national profile in specialist publications covering youth work, education and society
  • Highlight the charter as a blueprint for cultural organisations on how best to work with young people


  • Thought leadership – programme leader Ben Ayrton was positioned as an expert and disruptor and pitched as an interviewee/ profile subject to culture journalists
  • Narrative of threat – I used the hook of national funding cuts to our advantage positioning the charter as a means of ‘saving the next generation of artists and creatives’ in Britain and promoting the power of collaboration
  • Launch event and media call at The Discovery Museum, Newcastle

Campaign Budget: £1,750
Duration: Six Days


  • 33 pieces of media coverage
  • Young People’s Charter for Arts and Culture was featured large in Arts Industry, Arts Professional, Mailout Magazine, CYPN (Children and Young People Now) and as the subject of a thought leadership feature in The Guardian entitled ‘How to collaborate and really mean it
  • Covered regionally by 15 newspaper titles and locally by The Journal, Evening Chronicle, Sky Tyne and Wear, BBC Radio Newcastle and the Press Association Community Newswire.

What the client said:

Matthew is the best PR person I have ever worked with.

Ben Ayrton, Programme Manager, NE-Generation