Four Creatives / Artists wanted

Clarence Dock gate - through which 1.3m Irish Famine passed (c) AB

Quick overview

Following a recent National Lottery Heritage Fund grant award we’re seeking freelancers to work with us. We’re extending our work on the Liverpool Irish Famine Trail (more here). We want to create artistic projects that result in a digital output to help us populate an app we will develop. We want four creatives/artists to work with four (pre-identified) community groups -across Merseyside – to develop these creative projects.
For the purposes of the project, we are calling these roles ‘Citizen Research Group lead facilitators’. Each Citizen Research Group will look at two plaque sites from the Trail. The groups will work on creative ways to tell the site’s story to the public. Artists will help guide this work and finesse the end product. The Citizen Research Groups will be supported by members of our (already existing) History Research Group, who have worked on the project until now. The Citizen Research Group leads will report to our History Research Group lead, John Maguire. Their role is line-managed by the Festival’s Artistic Director and CEO, Emma Smith.

Who we want

Primarily we are looking for creatives -most likely freelancers- who enjoy co-creating activities with community. We welcome applications from all protected character groups. If there are any concerns about the application process, laid out below, please contact us directly. We would like to know how we can help you make your application with confidence.


Liverpool Irish Festival seeks four Citizen Research Group lead facilitators to head up an exciting new project. Over the coming years, Liverpool Irish Festival, alongside our city and community partners, will undertake the revitalisation of the historic Liverpool Irish Famine Trial. The Trail will be restored with the involvement of local communities, providing an invigorated cultural asset for the city, and creating new roles and creative commissions in the process.

Work to date

You can see the progress we have made by visiting our Trail site, where there is information on the seven plaque sites and memorial site, as well as the remaining sites of Irish influence that make up the Liverpool Irish Famine Trail. This is the second part of a long-term project, so we are already working with a very committed, well-skilled History Research Group and their Lead, John Maguire, who is also Director of ArtsGroupie CIC.

Creativity needed

The Citizen Research Group lead facilitators will work with the Liverpool Irish Festival’s Artistic Director and CEO (Emma Smith) and John, to recruit and lead a team of ‘citizen researchers’ from pre-identified communities. These volunteers (hopefully c.5-10 per group) will work with you to create two visual art works that help us to tell the story of one of our seven Liverpool Irish Famine Trail plaque sites and our Irish Famine Memorial. We are not prescriptive about what these art works will be, but they could involve a recorded theatre or dance piece, animation, tapestry, collage, painting, sculpture, film or other visual work that we can display in an app and online -and in life, if the opportunity presents itself.

Community led responses

We will team you with a History Research Group representative who can bring you up to speed on the research so far. You will then lead your group to find out more information and determine a plan for what you want to make with them and how that process will work. Your group will have picked your application from the submissions. The groups are affiliated with:

  • Docklands Trail
  • Liverpool Central Library
  • The Spider Project
  • Wirral Libraries

The successful candidates will work closely with their team of volunteers to document the process and assist with a project long social media campaign that helps to communicate findings, developments and process to the Festival’s audience.


The project calls for the delivery of no less than 30 ½ day workshops (15 days) + 10 make-and-evaluate days. This totals 25 days at £200 each = £5,000, delivered between Nov 2023 and July 2024 (some negotiation may be possible).

In addition, there is a residual £1,250* per artist to spend on either more days or additional materials, depending on the art work to be created. This will be approved in advance with the History Research Group Lead or Artistic Director and CEO.

* Not “£1,1250”, as erroneously posted here and in the attached information.

The Citizen Research Lead Facilitator will hold a purse for all project materials, volunteer travel and refreshments, which will be balanced and returned to the Artistic Director and CEO, in full, at the end of the project.

There is some funding available for community space hire, if this is required. This will be negotiated with the Festival if needed.


Application: To apply, please send a cover letter of not more than a 1,000 words. Applicants should address the job description and person specification requirements. Please send your letter, complete with your CV to: Emma Smith, Artistic Director and CEO, Liverpool Irish Festival [email protected]

Application deadline: 9am, Mon 13 Nov 2023. Applications received after this cannot be considered. We reserve the right to extend this deadline.

Application consideration and candidate invites: w/c Mon 13 Nov-w/e Fri 24 Nov 2023. Successful interviewees will be contacted during this period and invited to interview on or after 27 Nov 2023.

Interview date: We’ll hold interviews in the two weeks following Mon 27 Nov 2023. An applicant who cannot make interviews during this period should make this clear in their application and provide an alternative when they might be able to interview/start.

Start date: We hope the selected Citizen Research Group leads will be able to start quickly, but have some room to begin in early 2024. Candidates are asked to consider the duration of the project and their availability to deliver within the funding period (e.g., not beyond July 2024) before applying. If it’s likely to be problematic (within a few days), we’d ask you to state this in your application, along with your nearest start date, so we can consider the impact on the Festival programme.

Additional information

Funds for this project have come from National Lottery Heritage fund.


Image credit: Clarence Dock gate – through which 1.3m Irish Famine passed (c) AB (detail only).


Want to work with the Festival, but on a less formal basis? Consider volunteering for either our Front-of-House or History Research Group programmes. More here.

Associated events (please note, these may have passed)

Related writing

First published 1 Sept 2023; republished 8 Nov 2023.