The Turnpike CIC was a bold, independent not-for-profit arts project with community at its heart, based in Leigh, Greater Manchester.

This web archive, titled Could this be paradise? reflects on our 5 years in Leigh, highlighting the community voices and artists who have worked with us to shape our organisation.

We want to say a huge thank you to our Turnpike family; the team members, volunteers, artists, community members, peer organisations, funders and supporters who have invested their energy, creativity and ingenuity with us over the years.

Learning & Young People
Learning from artists
Helen Stalker, Director, Turnpike CIC

"To be honest, we probably started it off a little bit tentatively with ok well we’re going to do this exhibition, and let’s use that exhibition as a kind of springboard into creating a learning and engagement programme that’s inspired by the exhibition. But then I think as things evolved the learning and engagement programme just kind of took on a life of its own, and although the exhibitions and the commissions programme was still the point of inspiration and the springboard for a lot of that activity, actually that activity started to form the ethos of the organisation and became really, really central. I think one of the key things that Hannah brought, and that programme brought, was us learning from artists' process and also from the things, the way that artists were enabling community conversation and creativity. We saw a real value in us learning as an organisation from what those outcomes were. That also applies actually, fruitfully, from the commissioning and exhibition programme because I think in many cases we were really fortunate with the artists that we worked with, in that those artists and the integrity of those artists really taught us a lot as well as an organisation. So we started to evolve by working reality closely with artists and artists’ processes."