Crafting new connections in Coventry

Sparked by the idea for a #CovArtLockdown from Underground Lights Community Theatre, we’ve been busy helping a partnership of Coventry-based organisations develop and deliver craft packs that connect people through creativity.

Grapevine’s creative approach to bringing people together to tackle isolation in new and innovative ways, meant we knew people from all walks of life across the city who could benefit from Underground Lights’ message. They were already working closely with member Hayley’s original idea for a crafty toolkit to support their own groups but wanted to cast a wider net.

Craft pack contents
Craft packs and activities are helping to keep creative people connected

That ‘net’ turned into a collaboration between them, us, Coventry UK City of Culture 2021, Belgrade Theatre, Arty Folks and Crisis Coventry.

Hayley says: “I love being creative and making art. I believe doing so is beneficial to my mental well-being. 

“Being part of a creative community is a great way to express my art and ideas and I never feel alone.”

Jay from the Lads and Dads social movement around men’s mental health stepped in to act as craft pack delivery driver in company with one of our community organisers, Melissa. 

Lads and Dads have been lifting spirits with weekly Friday night ‘Family Lock In’ parties while making plans for social action post-lockdown. 

Creative ways to connect
Some of the information included in the packs

The packs went direct to anyone we knew didn’t have craft materials at home – we were determined that wasn’t going to stop them from having a chance to join in!

During lockdown, the craft kits keep hands and minds busy and connections flowing, as creations are shared via social media. When lockdown lifts in cultural spaces, the creations will likely form a celebratory exhibition hosted at the Belgrade Theatre. This will also help crafters who are not part of the digital world, be part of the celebration.

For more information, email

Included in the packs are a few more suggestions on how to connect in isolation from Grapevine and other local movements we’re involved in: