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Let’s celebrate Stoke-on-Trent!

We have been extremely lucky here at Inspired to travel across the world to help people share their extraordinary stories. We have filmed in Singapore, Oman, the USA, Australia, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Denmark, France and are currently packing our bags for a trip to China. Globetrotting is great but there’s no doubt about where our home is.

Our office is in the iconic Federation House just across the road from Stoke Station in the very heart of Stoke-on-Trent – just a five minute walk from where I grew up. The city, it’s history, it’s people (past and present) have been the inspiration for a large part of our work and that’s why we are absolutely thrilled that Stoke-on-Trent has been shortlisted to be the City of Culture 2021.

Tens of thousands used to make the intricately painted, hand crafted, fine ware that grace the best hotels, cruise liners, embassies, palaces and homes across the globe, and thousands still do. Ceramics has played such a role in the area that art and design runs through the DNA of Potteries folk, some just don’t know it.

Culture, history and heritage go hand in hand but it is definitely not a thing of the past in Stoke-on-Trent. There is a thriving art and music scene that can only be created as response to the kind of problems the city has faced over the last 20 years. A cultural offer of museums and theatres that is unrivalled for a location like ours. We have a growing creative industries sector that Inspired are hugely proud to be part of. Film-makers, techies, game-makers, designers, people who make great stuff, that are contributing to the economy, creating well paid jobs, competing nationally and globally and proud to be based here.

Let’s celebrate Stoke-on-Trent, let’s celebrate the great design, pottery art, music, literature and drama produced here. Let’s also celebrate the day to day culture of the six towns we are proud to call home. Let’s celebrate the culture of hard work, pubs, football terraces, solidarity, laughing at ourselves, looking out for one another and asking ‘Owrayte Duck?’

How does one place have more culture than another?

We certainly don’t know – but what is for sure is that Stoke-on-Trent has an abundance of it. Do we deserve the title more than Coventry, Sunderland, Swansea or Paisley? Frankly, yes! Stoke has been overlooked, under-funded, derided and underappreciated for far too long. The city that gave the world Wedgwood, Spode, Bennett, Belstaff, oatcakes and Matthews deserves to get a little back. Well done to all involved in getting us this far and let’s keep it up. It’s about time that everyone else knew how good a place this is.