Kate McDonald - Changing Face Of Hull

I moved to Hull in 1992 to study Psychology and apart from a couple of years living near Hornsea I’ve been here ever since. I love this city, its down to earthiness and friendliness and connectiveness. It’s a wonderful time to live here with the promise of the City of Culture to show the world what we’ve got to offer!
I’m sat in my shed in this photo because it was here back in 2011 that I was mulling over the impact of the recession on the city and the people. Having been made redundant myself some years before, I understood the effect this had on my sense of identity and on my confidence and wellbeing. I felt strongly in my gut that now was the time to develop timebanking, something which had been on my ‘to do’ list for some time in the context of my work in mental health (I had been a researcher and amongst other things led the development of PSYPHER, the early psychosis service). I realised that for the timebank to work, the whole community needed to be involved and that a mechanism was needed to facilitate questions about what people could offer rather than focus purely on what they need. It felt important to just do it right then and that like in the film ‘The Field of Dreams’, the people would come and the resources to make it happen would follow.
And that is what happened! We now have more than 400 members across the city including individuals, communities of interest (including PSYPHER) and organisations and businesses and the momentum is building. And this is the key thing – the timebank belongs to everybody. It is a mechanism which can help get things done. It unlocks the hidden assets within our communities which have always been there and it is beautiful!
The reason I have a heart in the photo is because for me timebanking is not just about ‘reweaving communities’, it is about love. Having the privilege to facilitate this and be a member myself takes it beyond work – its life! I’ve learnt so much too, that to break down barriers and stigma between groups happens when people come together with common values and that because everyone is equal, it enables people to connect who would never do so in normal circumstances. I call this a quiet revolution, a movement which enables us to exchange without money and value each other perhaps recognising that we are not so different after all. For people who have been ‘recipients of services’ the time bank enables them to be active citizens, being able to contribute as well as receive. I’ve met so many amazing people and it is wonderful observing friendships being made, interest groups being set up and exchanges happening.
And now it’s going to be even easier to get involved as last week we migrated to new software which means members can manage their own accounts (we even have a phone app freeing brokers up to spend more time supporting members who are less confident to get going. The range of things on offer is huge but the ones I have been most excited about recently include being able to get married for time credits. We even have a member with a vintage wedding car!
Timebanking is a way of connecting people and organisations to exchange skills and resources where time is the principal currency. In a sense it is like going back to the old days of bartering but the difference is no matter what is exchanged, for every hour you give, you get an hour back which you can ‘spend’ getting something you need. Everyone’s contribution is valued equally from rebuilding a wall, to having a massage to picking up some shopping for someone who can’t get out. To find out more about timebanking visit our website www.timebankhullandeastriding.co.uk

 The Changing Face Exhibition preview event is happening on April the 2nd you can book tickets for it by following this link:


Photo © Quentin Budworth


Steve Elliott


Hull is a good city to live and work in. People in the art scene are working hard to generate an improved perception of the city, its history and people.

I settled here five years ago after getting regular work with Creative Partnerships, a scheme which engaged artists to collaborate in schools to inspire teachers to be creative in their lessons.

The scheme has finished now but my freelance work is the same. I still try to create opportunities for learning and the development of creative skills.

I make processional sculpture, Little Giants, mostly to make people smile.

In 2014 I have collaborated with Dom Heffer, Amanda Lowe, Carol Walker, Anita Anita, Creative & Cultural Company, Judy’s Attic and Kingston Artgroup.

Steve is pictured here working on a giant Jack Frost  a joint commission with Amanda Lowe and the Creative and Cultural Company – you can see the finished processional sculpture at Princes Quay until the end of January 2015.


 The Changing Face Exhibition preview event is happening on April the 2nd you can book tickets for it by following this link:


Photo © Quentin Budworth

Graham Beck – artist, musician and performer

Graham Beck

Graham Beck – In his own words…
I first came to Hull as an art student, back in 1973, not knowing what Hull was like – my tutor had seen a programme on The Land Of Green Ginger, & said it looked a nice place. Reality seemed a bit different at first! Still, I got to like the place, formed an art college band (Ruby & The Takeaways) with Eric Goulden, who later became Wreckless Eric. We played upstairs at The Bull on Beverley Road, every Thursday night, from 1975-76. They were great times, & I even managed to get my degree in Fine Art! I went up to Newcastle University (teaching qualification), & then lived in London for 12 years, as a (struggling) musician & ‘entrepreneur’.

I arrived back in Hull in 1988, & have been here ever since. It’s definitely changing for the better (there have certainly been some huge changes since I was a student). It has a uniqueness which is hard to define when you live here, but the people are what make it. Sure, there are parts of Hull that need ‘looking at’ & revamping – we must be careful that it doesn’t lose it’s character because of all the redevelopment. Things have to move on, though.
These are difficult times, where budgets are tight & wages even tighter. Let’s hope that 2017 City Of Culture turns out to be all that’s promised, & that there IS a lasting legacy for the city. In the meantime, I’ll carry on being a musician………

Graham has two gigs coming up before the end of the year they are at Sewerby Hall Dec. 21st. & Adelphi Dec. 30th.

Here is Graham’s contact sheet he was absolutely marvellous to photograph and I’m looking forwards to photographing him again in the near future.

You can find out more about Graham here http://graham-graham-beck.co.uk or see him perform online here https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCp7swsktf_jN6XincAoSiww

Mick Mcgarry

A fantastic portrait session and some illuminating conversation at Hull Maritime Museum with the indomitable musical force of nature that is Mick Mcgarry – In the interview he spoke of his life really beginning with retirement and the joy that singing brings him. Mick is truly remarkable man who is changing the face of Hull through his work with the Hillbilly Troupe and his other musical activities within the city.

We are keen to work with and hear from the good people of Hull especially those with an interesting story from ALL walks of life. JOIN US! THIS Friday, 5th December between 6-30 and 8-00pm.at Princes Quay (Next door to the POP Gallery).