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Anonymous letter

Last week I was devastated to discover that someone had been hand posting letters to local residents in order to name and shame Studio 18. The letters are deliberately designed to solicit ‘noise or other anti-social behaviour’ complaints against Studio 18. The letter is anonymous so I have no idea who is distributing them, and no way of responding. In turn the anonymous letter writer has not put forward any evidence that ‘ noise or anti- social behaviour ‘ is emanating from Studio 18 or other local businesses.

Alarmingly, the anonymous letters have named my girlfriend who has no ownership, or responsibility for Studio 18 in any shape or form, and only helps out, as do many others, on a volunteer basis. She does a great job as a mother to our two children. Unfortunately this naming and shaming has caused her considerable distress.

Studio 18 has hosted a number of events bringing music and art actvities to Brimscombe. This has been welcomed by many residents. No antisocial -behaviour has ever been attributed to Studio 18 events and the police have never attended any incidents. We have been working hard to mitigate any potential noise nuisance by installing sound insulation, positioning of speakers and monitoring sound levels.

I would like to build on the good relationship we have with many local residents by inviting all local residents to an Open Day on May 13th between 1 - 3pm. This will be an opportunity for residents to have a look around Studio 18 and talk to the artists involved. There will also be the opportunity to view an exhibition and the set up of an audio , visual and arts event organised by local young artists from the Brimscombe area which will take place later that day. Hopefully, local residents will gain a better understanding of what Studio 18 is trying to achieve. This will also be an opportunity to talk dircectly to me about any feedback residents may have.

Over the past 5 years, Studio 18 has put in many hours creating a space where people of all demographics and generations can gather. The majority of events are free so we do rely on music events to fund more community-led projects such as the regeneration of bus stops on the London road which we worked together with Brimscombe Parish council. We also work with Stroud District Council on the ‘Holiday and activities program’ providing free workshops for young people. We have included our events as part of the Brimscombe and Thrupp Winter Collective initiative to ensure that there were activities for the local community to get together over the winter period, and to use Studio 18 as a community space.

Our aim is to foster a good working relationship with the community at large and I would really value feedback on our activities and events. In the spirit of open dialogue, any feedback, positive or otherwise would be welcome so that we can respond to, and design our activities with community benefit in mind.

I, and my fellow artists look forward to welcoming all local residents to our Open Day on the 13th May. If you cannot attend on the Open Day I would really appreciate any feedback you have ( positive or negative) by contacting me directly at .

Thank you for reading this - it’s quite long!

Zac Walsh, Director, Studio 18.

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