• Shields Road, Pelaw, Gateshead, NE10 0QD
  • hello@lawnmowerstheatre.com
  • 0191 478 9200

Changing the Culture since 1986

The Lawnmowers Independent Theatre Company is an arts organisation that is run by and for people with learning difficulties.

Introduction to The Lawnmowers

The Lawnmowers is a producing theatre-arts company.  Operating in Gateshead and the surrounding regions, The Lawnmowers is a unique company and is run by and for people with learning difficulties.

The Lawnmowers original actors, who formed in 1986, were a community group who later set up and developed the Lawnmowers Independent Theatre Company to try to achieve community cohesion.  The Company was registered in May 2000, with operations commencing in January 2001.

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Changing the Culture

Our Vision

We believe people with learning difficulties have the right to participate in society as equal citizens with opportunities to succeed.

Our Mission

We believe the arts can unlock the talents and capacity of people with learning difficulties to take charge of their lives, as active citizens, visible artists and agents of change.

What we do

Lawnmowers is a Gateshead-based charitable company which provides rich and varied cultural training for people with learning difficulties. Our programmes provide opportunities for people with learning difficulties to co-produce and deliver high quality artistic activities at various venues regionally, nationally and occasionally internationally and also address social and educational issues, accessibility, sustainability, participation, enjoyment and building futures.  Since incorporation in 2001 The Lawnmowers has worked directly with core member artists with learning difficulties daily, brought our message of integration to over 147,000 beneficiaries, audiences and external participants and worked in partnership or given assistance to over hundreds of oganisations and related bodies.

The Company has expanded and added projects and new volunteer opportunities for people with learning difficulties to its portfolio.  We have hosted many international groups at our current and former premises and have toured our work regionally and nationally.  Internationally we have toured our work to Poland, Brazil, Canada, Spain, Southern Ireland, Brazil, France and Chile.

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The Lawnmowers is a National Portfolio Organisation (NPO), a status awarded by Arts Council England which has described its NPO’s as taking a civic leadership role in the community.  We became one of only five organisations in Great Britain to win an international collaboration award from the London Olympic Committee under its Unlimited Programme.  We were the only learning disabled project to be selected to work with the international Points of Contact and the youth Cultural Warriors programmes.

Our ambitious programme caters for a range of ages, abilities, needs, aspirations, and experience. We have a deep understanding of the barriers to artistic development that people with learning difficulties face.  Low socio-economic status, lack of educational opportunities and lack of cultural understanding are some of the factors that prohibit people with learning difficulties from flourishing in the community.

Lawnmowers Members are called upon by learning disabled individuals, organisations (statutory and voluntary), bodies such as NHS Trusts, University students, lecturers & departments, teaching colleges, schools and adult learning providers to provide drama, performances, outreach and creative workshops to help them with issues relevant to LD.

Our Projects

Access to Artistic Opportunities:

  1. Local people with learning difficulties have access to increased progressive artistic training and performance opportunities that support personal and professional development;
  2. The Company has a wide and lively volunteer programme with volunteers from schools, colleges, communities and research students.

Lawnmowers Members with Learning Difficulties:

  1. Attend arts training at Lawnmowers Arts Centre to receive rigorous premises based artist training: Theatre for Change, Outreach Performance, Singing, Dancing, Percussion, Technical Training, youth hip-hop, youth theatre;
  2. Create accessible workshops, performances, booklets, films and reports;
  3. External delivery: Performances, workshops to a broad audience, drop-in weekly training evenings, evening nightclubs, international projects.  Members take work out to the public and create educational DVD’s that raises issues and explores solutions affecting the lives of their community including topics such as bullying, hate crime, sex education, discrimination and harassment, relationships and understanding legislation;
  4. Aim to continue to change attitudes through artistic performance with audiences including policy makers, researchers, universities, public bodies, nurses and students and thousands of people with learning disabilities in schools, universities and a wide range of settings.

A Whole of Life Approach – Arts for Social Impact

Through piloting potential new projects during previous phases, our Connect Our Revolution plans have evolved significantly to include a new whole of life approach to Lawnmowers work, introducing new permanent activities for younger and older people with learning difficulties through arts-based participatory programmes and interactive research.

Health and Wellbeing – Engaging with People with Learning Difficulties

Lawnmowers members worked with our Local Authority to deliver mental health training in the workplace.  We continue to support our artists in holistic wellbeing methods and offer yoga, meditation, gardening and eco gardening and cooking training at the centre.  We attended and were panel members at the national Culture Health and Wellbeing Alliance conference this year and attend the local Health Watch conferences.

Our company

Bring to the table win-win survival strategies to ensure proactive domination. At the end of the day, going forward.

Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale a tale of a fateful trip started from this tropic port aboard this tiny ship. Love exciting and new. Come aboard were expecting you. Love life’s sweetest reward Let it flow it floats back to you.

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Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale a tale of a fateful trip that started from this tropic port aboard this tiny ship all of them had hair of gold like their mother the youngest one in curls. Space.

Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale a tale of a fateful trip that started from this tropic port aboard this tiny ship all of them had hair of gold like their mother the youngest one in curls. Space.

Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale a tale of a fateful trip that started from this tropic port aboard this tiny ship all of them had hair of gold like their mother the youngest one in curls. Space.

Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale a tale of a fateful trip that started from this tropic port aboard this tiny ship all of them had hair of gold like their mother the youngest one in curls. Space.

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Changing the Culture

Registered in England & Wales      Charity No: 1084229                        Company No: 3995521

Contact

  • Shields Road, Pelaw, Gateshead
  • 0191 478 9200
  • hello@lawnmowerstheatre.com
  • Resources
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Opening Hours

  • Monday 10:00am - 8:00pm
  • Tuesday 10:00am - 8:00pm
  • Wednesday 10:00am - 8:00pm
  • Thursday 10:00am - 8:00pm
  • Friday 10:00am - 4:30pm
  • Saturday 10:30am - 12:30pm
  • Sunday CLOSED
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