Take Notice: Five free ways to celebrate your city in 2017

Maybe you’ve never visited an exhibition, perhaps there’s a part of the city you haven’t explored yet or maybe you fancy learning a new skill. Whatever you’re interested in, there’s so much you can get involved with this year and it doesn’t have to break the bank.

We’ve rounded up five events and activities that you can get stuck into and none of them will cost you a penny.

Ferens Art Gallery Open Exhibition. Photo: © Chris Pepper


13 Jan-12 Mar, Ferens Art Gallery

Celebrating the creativity of local amateur and professional artists, the Ferens Open Exhibition has been going strong for 50 years and was visited this week by none other than Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall, who even purchased a piece.

With many of the artists taking inspiration from life in Hull and the surrounding areas, you’ll see local people and landmarks as you’ve never seen them before – through photography, sculpture, sketches and paintings.

Expect to spend a good hour in the Open Exhibition, then finish off your trip with a browse around the other works on display in the newly-refurbished Ferens Art Gallery.

Revolutionary Makers. Photo: © Feet First


14 Feb, 28 Feb-1 Mar, various locations in Hull

Hull’s very first Women of the World (WOW) festival takes place this March and we’re inviting you to get involved by becoming a Revolutionary Maker, starting a conversation around gender equality.

Come along to one of three Revolutionary Maker workshops, where you will be given the tools and the knowledge to create pieces of hand-crafted art work displaying positive and thought-provoking messages. Whether you make a badge, a brooch, a wristband or something entirely different, your piece will be displayed at the WOW festival and gifted to a visitor to help spread the word.


25 Mar – 14 May, Hull Maritime Museum

Do you remember the sea of poppies that swept over the Tower of London in 2014? Experience it for yourself as the Weeping Window descends on Hull City Centre.

Pouring out of a window in the Hull Maritime Museum and dispersing over Queen Victoria Square, the exhibition by Paul Cummins and Tom Piper marks the centenary of the First World War in a poignant location that acted as Hull’s backdrop to many of the defining wartime events.

The City Speaks. Photo: © Thomas Arran


All year, Humber Dock Street

If you’ve seen the tidal surge barrier before, you’ll probably find it difficult to imagine it as a piece of art, but be prepared to change your mind. In this new commission by Michael Pinsky, the tidal barrier is transformed into a 21st-century Speakers’ Corner, proudly displaying the thoughts and feelings of the people of Hull.

Fancy having your say? Head down to our lectern on Humber Dock Street and speak your, then watch as your words appear on the tidal barrier situated directly opposite. If you’re feeling speechless, just head down at sunset and enjoy the words of a stranger.

The Larkin Trail. Photo: © Thomas Arran


All year, various locations in Hull and beyond

Philip Larkin is one of Hull’s greatest exports, rising to fame as one of the most celebrated post-war poets whilst working as a librarian at the University of Hull. Want to learn more about the life and work of Hull’s literary hero? Get your coat on and embark on The Larkin Trail.

Featuring city centre hotspots such as the Royal Hotel and Ye Olde Black Boy before heading out to the likes of Pearson Park and the University of Hull, the trail takes visitors on a literary journey whilst offering up views of some of Hull’s spectacular architecture.

Download your free trail guide here.

Want to know more about how you can get involved in events and activities in your city? Visit our Make It Happen page for more information.