Build a Better Primary

by Primary in Nottingham, England, United Kingdom


raised so far

+ est. £3265.75 Gift Aid



Help us transform our building into a warm, welcoming, and sustainable place for Nottingham’s creative community - and beyond!

by Primary in Nottingham, England, United Kingdom

New stretch target

If we make our first goal, our stretch target is all about our garden project!

Over the past couple of years we've transformed part of the old school playground into an urban garden, with the help of our residents and volunteers in our local community. We now have a flourishing dye garden and a number of edible plants, which we use to run free gardening sessions. 

We've got lots of ideas to expand our garden project and make the most of our outdoor space. If we raise some extra money, we can dream much bigger, creating a beautiful outdoor space with a covered shelter for COVID-safe outdoor gatherings.

Expand and read our project overview then click here to see photos of the amazing rewards!

What is Primary?

Primary is an artist-led contemporary visual arts organisation, based at the old Douglas Road Primary School in Radford, Nottingham. We run a free public programme of events and exhibitions, and we provide studio spaces to over 50 resident artists.


We’re also home to some amazing independent galleries, workshops, and small businesses, including NeighbourFood, Four/Four, TG, Trade, Beam Editions, Clay Studio Nottingham, Weave Studio Nottingham, Lane, and the award-winning Small Food Bakery. 

Why are we fundraising?

In Spring 2020, as the UK went into lockdown, we made a brave decision to secure Primary’s future: we bought our Grade II listed building from Nottingham City Council. This means we can focus on making Primary a long-term hub for artists, creatives, and our local community. We’ve already secured a grant from Arts Council England to cover the purchase of our building and get us started on a transformational refurbishment and capital development project.


But now we need your help. The pandemic has made it a huge challenge to fundraise for projects like ours – but it’s also highlighted how important it is to make sure there are permanent, independent spaces dedicated to the future of art and creativity. We know that we've been lucky to survive so far, especially in such tough circumstances. 

With your support, we can make the future of Primary warmer, brighter, and greener – more accessible, more welcoming, and more sustainable – so we can continue to benefit even more artists, visitors, and members of our local community for many years to come.



What will we do with the money? 

1. We’ll make Primary more accessible

Our old Victorian building is currently very inaccessible to anyone with restricted mobility – even our ground floor is split over two levels! We want to ensure easy level access for all visitors by reconfiguring our entrance and installing a step lift.  

We also need to upgrade our child-sized toilets by installing separate cubicles, including one which is fully accessible.


2. We’ll make Primary more welcoming

We have a bit of a visibility problem at Primary – it’s easy to walk past us without even knowing we’re there! We want to transform this old school building into a proper public resource that feels welcoming to everyone. We'll install bigger and better signs on the outside of our building, refurbish our entrance and reception area, and make it much easier to find your way around inside.


Growing and cooking food is an important part of our programme, so we also need to upgrade our kitchen to make it a usable space for workshops and events, as well as making it a better resource for our community of resident artists.  

We’re also going to refurbish our exhibition spaces, improving the acoustics and lighting and installing plenty of comfy seats!


3. We’ll make Primary more sustainable

We've already replaced our old, unreliable boiler, but we're still having problems with our (increasingly leaky) Victorian pipes, so we need to replace the distribution system to make it more reliable and energy efficient. We'll repair our windows, doors, and roofs to make our building more airtight, less draughty, and better insulated. We're also replacing all of our old fluorescent bulbs with LED lighting.


That sounds like a lot to do...

Yes, we know! And some of the work is already underway thanks to our grant from Arts Council England and support from Nottingham City Council. But we can't do it all without your help. Every penny we raise during this crowdfunder will help us to do more, to work to higher specifications, and to think more ambitiously!


Amazing Rewards

Primary residents have created and donated rewards to our growing list, including original artworks, handcrafted objects and bespoke experiences. All rewards are listed to the right. Below are some photos of just a handful or what is available to claim in return for your donation.

Click here to see more photos of the amazing rewards donated and created by our resident artists!

£60: Amrick at Fourways Photographic Print by Jagdish Patel (left)
£80: Introduction to Photography with Jagdish Patel (right)


£100: In-depth espresso & latte masterclass with Bradley (left)
£20: Art walk with Chris Lewis-Jones (right)

£15: Make Primary Create Again Badge (left)
£10: Holly Rozier's postcards of Susan (right)

£130: Waves by Louisa Chambers (left)
£100: Edwin Burdis Screen Print (right)

£150: Inlaid stoneware wall-piece by Nastassja Simensky (left)
£40: Parker Ito limited edition publication (right)


£50: Help Primary coast(er) to success! 


£75: How to design and publish a book &
£100: Art books from Beam Editions


£150: Rioter (LB's Insomnia) by Craig Fisher (left)
£950: NORDLYS by Line Nilsen (right) 


£70: Circle Necklace by Fiona Harris Jewellery (left)
£40: Limited editions by Rebecca Lee (right)


£85: Bird Head by Debra Swann (left) 
£50: Ash Alldread's aluminium print (right) 


£130: Silk screen print: 2LC SymM Lamp Black SP17 (left, below)
£130: Silk screen print: 1LC SymM+R GV1 Blu SP17 (right, below)


Silk screen print: 1LC SymM+R Blk Blu SP17 (left, below)
Silk screen print: 2LC SymM+R Blk Blu SP17 (right, below)


£40: Alfred House 2 by Jo Wheeler (left)
£40: Alfred House 4 by Jo Wheeler (right)


£65: The Meadow Behind Bars (Group Shelter) I June by Alison Lloyd (left)
£20: Walk with Alison Lloyd (right)


£80: Ethics of Contemporary Art by Theo Reeves-Evison
£90: Exotica Suite Book/CD + The Sorceress artwork


Thank you so much for your support

We know this is a really difficult time for a lot of people, especially those who work in the arts. Please do not feel any pressure to donate if you're already struggling. If you'd like to help but can't do so financially, please share this page as far and wide as you possibly can!

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