Making Tracks goes North West in partnership with TiPP

Next week sees the fruition of an exciting partnership with TiPP in Manchester, with a first group of young people in Oldham taking part in our Making Tracks programme:


The Irene Taylor Trust and TiPP are two of the most well established and well respected arts organisations in the sector. We both work from a belief in the power of the arts to transform lives, break down barriers and help people who have found themselves on the fringes of society to become celebrated and valued members of the community. For the first time we are coming together, combining nearly sixty years of knowledge, skills and experience, to bring ITT’s flagship programme, Making Tracks, to the North West.

Making Tracks singer, photo by Lizzie CoombesMaking Tracks targets young people at elevated risk, including those on the fringes of the criminal justice system and those who are NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training). We expand the horizons of the young people and offer up to a year of progression support, including: taster sessions; an intensive workshop week which culminates in a live performance to the local community; a series of follow-on music sessions tailored to the group’s interests; one-to-one sessions with our Personal Development Coordinator. We work with local partners to recruit the young people and work in their local community, making the workshops as accessible as possible. The young people receive pastoral support and bespoke guidance to further development opportunities. Making Tracks has been validated as Project Oracle Standard 1.

“Through music we gain confidence in ourselves, learn by working with others, learn to trust others.” Heretier, Making Tracks participant

A short film about Heritier’s Making Tracks experience is here.

During the intensive project, over just 5 days, led by the Irene Taylor Trust’s project team, the young people taking part learn how to play instruments, form a band and write their own original songs. As well as performing their original songs live, the new band make recordings of all the tracks, which are then professionally mixed and posted online to the Making Tracks Soundcloud page.

“At the beginning of this week I was really shy. I’m a really shy person anyway, but this week has really brought me out of my shell; it’s made me so much more confident. I was absolutely buzzing on the night of the gig… I definitely feel like it’s helped me a lot.” Steph, Making Tracks participant

A short film about Steph’s Making Tracks experience is here.

After taking part in the 5-day intensive project, the young people will be given the opportunity to hone their new-found skills over a series of follow-on music sessions, over the course of which they can earn an officially recognised Arts Award accreditation.

Making Tracks guitarist by Lizzie CoombesCentral to Making Tracks is guiding the young people, buoyed with their raised self-confidence, on to further opportunities. Our Personal Development Coordinator Debbie works closely with the young people to help source suitable progression routes and development opportunities.

The pilot Making Tracks project took place in Lambeth in 2011. It became a core part of our work from 2012 on-wards and projects have now taken place in the London Boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Newham, Lewisham, Croydon and Hammersmith & Fulham. In 2018 we realised a long-term strategic aim to bring Making Tracks to the North West, working in partnership with TiPP.

This two-year pilot will allow us to work with young people in and around Manchester, as well as training musicians in the region to learn by working alongside our experienced project team.

Making Tracks: North West is supported by

Thank you to Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Arts Council England and the Hedley Foundation for supporting this initial two-year pilot phase.

Listen to our musicListen to the music! There is now a dedicated Soundcloud page for the original music created on Making Tracks – here.

Here is a short film about the Making Tracks intensive project:


For participants: There is now a special Making Tracks micro-site designed to provide more information for participants – visit it here.

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