Big Sky Arts

Big Sky Arts was a music project funded by the Lloyds TSB Banking Foundation which worked with adults with learning difficulties & disabilities in Hartlepool.

Artists Kev Howard and Mike Turnbull, with the support of Jason Hunt of Hartlepool Adult Day Services, worked with participants to create a EP of new and original music.

Phase 1 concluded with performances at the WorldFest Community Event in 2010 and at the All Aboard shop in Middleton Grange shopping centre.

Phase 2 concluded with a performance at the Sage Gateshead as part of the Sparks Music Festival.

Big Sky Arts: Phase 1

Big Sky Arts Film

Phase 1 Evaluation

Evaluation of phase 1 suggests:

  • Participants have improved anger-management, and that this became self-managed.
  • Participants have a positive focus and are expressing themselves through the music.
  • There is increased confidence and well-being amongst participants.
  • Participation in a group activity has developed teamwork and positive relationships.

Participant Feedback

It’s the first time I’ve played drums. As I’m deaf I never thought I’d get the opportunity. I’ve really enjoyed the sessions.



With thanks to the Lloyds TSB Foundation for England and Wales for funding this project, and the support of Hartlepool Adult Day Services.

Big Sky Arts: Phase 2

From November 2010 Big Sky Arts started Phase 2 of the project which culminated in a live performance at the Sage Gateshead. Watch their performance below:

Big Sky Arts Film

Over 15 sessions adults with learning disabilities from Hartlepool worked with musicians Kev Howard and Mike Turnbull, with the support of Jason Hunt to create, develop and rehearse music which was performed live as part of Music Spark at the Sage Gateshead.

All the Music

The Music



Northern Rock Foundation
Arts Council Enfland