It’s been a year since we officially launched The Boardwalk and what a year its’ been!

Previously the home to Scottish Youth Theatre, in Spring 2023 The Boardwalk was taken over by Impact Arts and transformed into a purpose-built creative and accessible events venue, boasting a 180-capacity theatre, seven studios and meetings rooms capable of hosting everything from dance rehearsals and creative workshops to corporate events and conferences.

Since opening the doors The Boardwalk has welcomed more than 22,000 visitors from Glasgow and beyond, and hosted more than 250 different organisations and customers. Many of the country’s leading creative organisations have benefitted from the spaces, from permanent theatrical tenants like Solar Bear and Birds of Paradise, to dance studios brought to life by the likes of S-MB Company and The Work Room, and transformative creative engagement charities like Playlist for Life and Inspiring Scotland.

In the last year The Boardwalk has also become a vital and vibrant base for Impact Arts. That has included welcoming older communities struggling with social isolation, improving the wellbeing and attainment of children via art therapy, and empowering teens and young adults through our employability programmes such as the recent Creative Pathways project, which in March culminated in a celebratory showcase of artwork created by our young people, including a design which could be used by cosmetics giant Lush later this year.

The Boardwalk is a social enterprise and all money raised from the hires, events, and tenants directly benefits the work of Impact Arts across Scotland. And as we get ready to celebrate our 30th anniversary this year, the second year of life at The Boardwalk looks set to be just as busy.

Fiona Doring, Chief Executive Officer of Impact Arts, said: “The Boardwalk has been a fantastic opportunity for Impact Arts to move into Glasgow’s city centre to a venue that supports the arts sector in Scotland through the provision of accessible and inclusive spaces. The venue has a real social heart and all those that visit comment on just how friendly and welcoming it is. The mix of people who use the studios creates a fantastic buzz and the range and volume of people who have accessed our studios and events over the year has been wonderful!”

If you are looking for a space for your next event, then check our The Boardwalk or contact [email protected] for more information

In March we opened the doors of our new venue in Glasgow. The Boardwalk is a vibrant space for hire – with sprung-floors for dancers; a 120-seater theatre; and flexible meeting rooms. Hiring space in The Boardwalk helps fund the creative engagement work we do with communities across central Scotland.

Our launch showcased not just the space, but the work of Impact Arts participants – from our older people’s Craft Cafe members who sewed quilts and made paintings, to our youth projects like Creative Pathways and CashBack who worked on installations using film, ceramics and illustration. We had a silent disco with music from our criminal justice project, CoCo, and upcycled homewares from our tenancy sustainment programmes.

It made us proud to have past participant Sian Clark performing, and our Sketchy Youths running a screen printing workshop. Thank you to everyone who supported us, and offered kind wishes, on the day. We hope to see you back through our doors soon!

All photographs by Tiu Makkonen