The historic Birmingham Assay Office has joined forces with the Midlands Arts Centre (Mac) in a partnership to support the refurbishment of the arts centre’s jewellery studio.
The partnership, worth £15,000 in total, comes as Mac is undertaking a £14.8 million building project which will dramatically improve facilities on the site in Cannon Hill Park.
The deal is part of the Birmingham Assay Office’s commitment to supporting jewellery makers in the city and will enable Mac to update the facilities and environment in its popular Jewellery Studio.
The work will include installing ventilation systems for the first time and improving the space by repairing the original quarry tile floor, repainting walls and ceilings and refurbishing existing tools and machinery.
The new space will go under the name The Birmingham Assay Office Jewellery Studio and will offer established and emerging jewellery makers a much needed facility to develop their craft and share practice with other artists.
Dorothy Wilson, Mac’s building project champion, said: “We would like to offer our thanks and appreciation to The Birmingham Assay Office for their support to Mac’s building project.
“Through this partnership, we are now able to dramatically improve our facilities for jewellery designers and makers, which will support the development of talent in the region.”
The Mac has offered classes in jewellery making for several decades and its facilities have been used regularly by established designers, emerging jewellers, adults attending classes, young people through the formal education system and children and families through school holiday and weekend classes.
It closed its doors at its Cannon Hill Park home last April to enable work to begin on the new arts centre which is due to open later on this year.