Grow Projects

Growtheatre Projects

We work with a wide range of partners and participants on a whole host of projects.  Current and recent projects include:

Arts Award Discover at Home

Congratulations to six of our Youth Theatre Members who took on the daunting task of undertaking Arts Award Bronze over lockdown. We were delighted to work with Rachael from Third Angel to deliver this. The group met over Zoom in June and July and developed their knowledge, skills and talents by taking part – both our Rachel and their Rachael agree that Audrey, Babette, Beth, Evan, Greg and Millie exceeded our expectations and produced some truly exceptional work!

Check our their amazing work here


Arbourthorne Family Adventures

We are delighted to be making 4 activity packs to go out to families in Arbourthorne as part of the Healthier Holidays scheme.  Each pack will take families on a themed adventure and will be stuffed with exciting ideas and resources to transform a boring day into an adventure!  Each Adventure is introduced by a character in a small film.

Week 4 – Spy Kids

Week 3 – Superheros


Week 2 – School for Sorcerers

Week 1 – Pirate Adventure


Bags of Creativity

Growtheatre was delighted to be part of Create Sheffield (Sheffield’s Local Cultural Education Partnership) and IVE’s Bags of Creativity. The project to distributed Bags of Creativity to 2004 children and young people across the city.  The bags are designed to make sure the children and young people can be creative at home by providing everything they need in one place. Growtheatre was one of nineteen creative practitioners and organisations to provide creative activities for the bags. For more information, please click here.












Grow Family Events in the School Holidays

Do you and your kids love being creative and exploring outdoors? These sessions promise to be lots of fun and give your kids a chance to let their imaginations run wild in the woods!


Perfect afternoon, thank you. My nine year old is still in the garden with her stick and the potato peeler perfecting her stick. Looking forward to the next one. Thank you for your hard work organising the event. Two hours whizzed by! They’ve been whittling sticks all week!”

“Just wanted to say how much my daughter enjoyed the Superheroes session of Grow. She was gutted to leave early & keeps asking what Dr Concrete might’ve done when he turned up! We were at Longshaw today & she was worried that some tree stumps we saw were the evil work of Doc C!”




Growtheatre had a brilliant Summer with Sheffield Libraries exploring the great Outer Space across 5 different libraries! We travelled in our Rocket Ships to visit the Aliens that Love Underpants and we journeyed to learn all about the constellations and planets!

We loved meeting all the astronauts and astronomers that came to the workshops and we are very grateful to have been involved with Sheffield Libraries!

Festival of Fun 2019:

Growtheatre had a fabulous time taking part in Children’s University, Festival of Fun this year. We hosted workshops at 4 different parks in Sheffield and we had wonderful adventures tracking down the mysterious Giant Footprint. 

“Just a quick but very big thank you for the session today. It was fantastic and my daughter Phoebe absolutely loved it. The facilitator was lovely and excellent at engaging the kids.”


Playing the Archive team and Growtheatre work in partnership in project to highlight traditional games for 21st Century audiences.

“The team from Playing the Archive project would like to say a huge thank you to Rachel and the six members of Growtheatre Youth Theatre who recently took part in a vocal workshop at the Site Gallery Sheffield.

The six members taking part were (in no particular order) Zak, Isobelle, Martha, Matilda, Theo and Sophia, each making their own distinct and personal contribution to the workshop. Everyone worked so hard with enthusiasm and a can-do attitude, we asked a lot of the group and we were very impressed with their professional and mature approach to the tasks we presented them with. The results are now back from the sound editing process and they are very good, just what we wanted and what we expected from such a productive workshop. Well done everyone you were amazing!

Thanks also go to the parents/carers who supported the children at the workshop it made all the difference having them there.

It was a great pleasure to meet and work with everyone who attended the Site Galley workshop and it is clear that Growtheatre and the work the children do there offers opportunities to build on a range of skills. In particular individual confidence, self-assurance and team work all of which were evident in their work with us in what was a demanding session. Thanks again.”

Playing the Archive team


We were delighted when two of our members Sophia and Martha suggested that we teach the rest of their Youth Theatre group some of the games they had discovered – here they are being amazing drama game facilitators!


Some background to Playing the Archive project

  • ‘Playing the Archive’ is an ambitious programme of research and cultural production, exploring the nature of play by bringing together archives, spaces and technologies of play, along with people who play, both old and young. It runs from September 2017 to August 2019.
  • Funded by the EPSRC through the Content Creation and Consumption in the Digital Economy call, the project addresses the ephemerality of practices and memories encoded in play.
  • The project will digitise and catalogue substantial sections of the Opie manuscript archive at the Bodleian Libraries, creating a new catalogue to be designed and hosted by the Digital Humanities Institute at the University of Sheffield.
  • (where contribution from the Growtheatre members will be used) Design an AR/VR play environment based on the archive to be delivered at the V&A Museum of Childhood in London and the Site Gallery in Sheffield to explore experimental ‘smart’ play.
  • In doing so, Playing the Archive aims to promote empathy across generations by allowing children to play games that their forebears described to the Opies in the 1950s and 60s, while simultaneously allowing members of that generation to play today’s games, in an intergenerational exchange of cultural memory and play.
  • By digitising a major part of the Opie Collection, creating detailed metadata about its content, and making it publicly accessible online, the project will make the archive accessible both to researchers and to those individuals, now in their seventies, who contributed to it.   

Telling the Bees for the Being Human Festival

We were delighted to revive out Telling The Bees Performance Lecture at Kings Manor, York. Audience members  took part in an interactive drama performance that looked at the past, present and future of bees and beekeeping.  The Performance Lecture shared what a bee spoon is, told how the honey  bee got her sting and offered a glimpse into the future.

Telling the Bees, November 2017
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Night At The Museum

We were delighted to be asked to create this character-led, interactive evening for Clifton Park Museum. There is nothing like a bit of mummification, human sacrifice and immortal daring do – we hope the kids who come to visit the museum at night have a blast!

Telling The Bees – Festival Of The Mind 2016

Telling The Bees gave us the opportunity to collaborate on a creative project about bees with archaeologist Dr Toby Pillatt.  It was a brilliant project that saw us working with with young people, academics, Sheffield Beekeepers’ Association, professional actors and students. We created a brilliant interactive Performance-Lecture in the beautiful Spiegal Tent for the Festival of the Mind.






 Waking The Ghosts Of Wincobank Hill


Supported by Heritage Lottery Fund, Waking The Ghosts of Wincobank Hill is part of larger project called Roots Of Iron, which is a project focuses on getting young people of Wincobank engaged in activities that explore the history, archaeology and heritage of Wincobank Hill.

Waking The Ghosts of Wincobank Hill was an outdoor promenade performance as part of Light Up The Hill 2015.  Local young people worked with Growtheatre’s director, a designer, a lighting designer and archaeology students.  They created an outdoor performance as well as designing, building and making their own props, costumes and lighting effects.

The video of Light Up the Hill 2015 filmed and edited by young people as part of the Roots of Iron project is now public, to view it please visit:

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 Stone Age School Sessions for Clifton Park Museum

Stone Age CPM 2015(10)  Test 2 Stone Age CPM 2015(9)  TestStone Age CPM 2015(5)

We were delighted to win the tender to design two Key Stage Two Stone Age sessions for Clifton Park Museum in Rotherham. We wanted to do something a little bit different to the museums normal schools’  sessions – so we suggested that we worked outside with a fire.  The Museum was completely up for it and so the session was designed to be led in Clifton Park next to the museum.  These photos are of our pilot session with the lovely Y5s of a local Primary School and include firelighting, bows and arrows, object handling, hunting mesolithic animals and building neolithic settlements.

“I am really pleased with the final session. It covers everything we asked for and more. The children are engaged through activities which encourage them to take part and have a go. This is the first time we have offered an outdoor session in the park. Rachel with her experience of delivering Forest School style sessions was able to show us how these sessions could work and to give us confidence to deliver ourselves. The activities within the session were well thought out and had clear links to the Stone Age. They were suitable for the ages and there was enough variety to keep the children interested. Rachel is an excellent deliverer. She really engages the children though practical activities and drama and role play.”

Lorna Pedley, Learning Officer, Heritage Services, Clifton Park Museum

Sheffield Young Carers – Creative Mazes

A summer holiday project with Sheffield Young Carers found us discovering Sheffield’s amazing Shire Brook Valley Nature Reserve – a hidden gem in Sheffield’s wonderful outdoor spaces. It was great to plan with staff from Sheffield Young Carers Project and come up with session plan for the day, which included games and using the environment to create mazes, learning to use tools and the opportunity to play creative games.

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“On the day, ten young carers attended and had a fantastic day in the woods and surroundings playing fun games in meadows, exploring woods and storytelling.  Sheffield Young Carers Project would definitely use Growtheatre again in the future to deliver activities for young carers across Sheffield. We had upmost confidence in Grow Theatre’s ability to deliver the brief on the day of the activity.”

Lou Wright, VOYCE schools training & development worker for Sheffield Young Carers

The Mystery Of The Factory In The Woods, An Audio Adventure and Guided Walk

Embark on an amazing audio adventure through time, take a guided walk to discover stories of Ecclesall Woods and learn how archaeology can teach us how to understand the past: songs, stories and incredible facts for all the family!

Audio Adventure Trailer can be downloaded here.

Available from July 2015: Download the The Mystery Of The Factory In The Woods Audio Adventure here to listen on a smart phone in Ecclesall woods or borrow an MP3 player from the J.G. Graves Woodland Centre (opening times only).

Click here for full Audio Adventure details.

The Mystery Of The Factory In The Woods is a partnership project between Growtheatre, University of Sheffield’s Department of Archaeology and Sheffield City Council Woodland Section and supported by the University of Sheffield’s Arts Enterprise Fund.

The photos show some of the fascinating things we got up to with Archaeologists in our quest to unearth stories of the woods!

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Sheffield’s Back Garden – Living History in Ecclesall Woods

Funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Sheffield’s Back Garden is a film by Growtheatre made with the education team at the Ecclesall Woods Woodland Discovery Centre. The film tells the story of Ecclesall Woods from Neolithic times to the modern day.  Special thanks to Professor Mel Jones and all the people who took part!

 Crafting The Land, From Seed To Table

A community project that will bring together the residents of Stannington, local school children and people from across Sheffield who are passionate about growing their own food!  Working at the Freeman Bio-Dynamic Garden at High Riggs, alongside Freeman College artisans and Growtheatre to explore a broad range of creative activities linked to the heritage of the site and crafting the land. Including learning how to make a copper garden trowel, tending to, harvesting and cooking seasonal produce and a whole host of creative activities that will allow everyone involved to understand the land beneath our feet and the impact it can have on our hands and heart.  Come and join us at the Crafting The Land Public Open Day at the Freeman Bio-Dynamic Garden on 18 July to see what we have been getting up to!


Photo by Jeremy Lampson.  Crafting The Land, From Seed To Table is part of Ruskin in Sheffield, an initiative of the Guild of St George, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Light Up The Hill

Working with film maker Ellie Ragdale, young people from Wincobank and the Roots Of Iron Project a brief history of Wincobank Hill was created as an awesome animation film.  It was projected onto Sheffield’s Bling Bus and shown on top of the hill as part of the Light Up The Hill Celebrations.  We think that the young film makers did a fantastic job – here is the film!

Light up the Hill from Ellie Ragdale on Vimeo.

Theatre In The Woods

Theatre In The Woods are holiday projects for children. Working in Ecclesall Woods, children have a brilliant adventure with us and enjoy taking part in outdoor theatre making and developing ranger skills, such as working with wood, tools and ropes, to build and make props and sets!

Music In The Woods

Music In The Woods are holiday sessions that offer families the chance to get  creative and have fun together. We created songs, stories, musical instruments and stick characters.  Parents and children, alike, had fun and loved working together.