Hidden Spire

A unique collaboration between an arts centre and a homelessness centre.

Hidden Spire is a unique collaboration between an arts centre and a homelessness centre.

In 2011, at the Old Fire Station in Oxford, two charities decided to move in together and experiment with how to share a building. This meant finding new and innovative ways to meaningfully include people experiencing homelessness in the day to day life of a public arts centre.

The result is Hidden Spire. And it works like this:

  • People experiencing homelessness are invited to take part in, and lead, high quality artistic work in our theatre and gallery.

  • They are trained, in any element of the arts centre they are most interested in, in a way which works for them. This doesn’t need to relate to art.

  • They watch shows for free – complimentary theatre tickets are available to people experiencing homelessness to be a part of our audience alongside other members of the public. They can also usher shows as part of our volunteer team.

All of this means people who have been through an incredibly difficult time can choose to take off the label of being ‘a homeless person’ and become who they really are: an actor, a poet, an illustrator, a theatregoer, a volunteer, a trainee.

Some clients have gone on to become fully fledged members of the staff team and joined our Board of Trustees. This means the Old Fire Station is now governed in part by people who originally came in because they had nowhere secure to live.

The Hidden Spire website is a celebration of all the theatre productions, exhibitions, and experiences people have had at the OFS because of the relationship between our arts centre and Crisis. Most importantly, it shows that excellent art and inclusive art can be the same thing.

​Find out about all our Hidden Spire projects: www.hiddenspire.co.uk

Photographer Call Out! 

We are seeking an emerging photographer/facilitator to lead creative photography sessions for adults as part of the Hidden Spire Collective, exploring the theme of Hidden Histories.  

Who are the Hidden Spire Collective?

The Hidden Spire Collective is a creative collaboration between Arts at the Old Fire Station and the homelessness charity Crisis. The collective is a group of creative people and is open to current and former Crisis clients and anybody from the Oxford/shire community over the age of 18.

For more information about the Hidden Spire Collective, please head to the website – https://www.hiddenspire.co.uk/

The project sessions will run at The Old Fire Station for 10 weeks on Wednesday afternoons from 2.15 to 4.30 pm starting on May 15th.

Please view our ARTIST BRIEF for information about this opportunity and how to apply.

Deadline: 12noon Wednesday 24 April 2024

Interviews will be held on Wednesday 1 May 2024