REVIEW: 1UP @ The Basement, Kensington Gardens, 17/08/2017

The Verse’s Chanelle Manton tells us what she thought of 1UP, an event for young people hosted at The Basement in Kensington Gardens on the 17th August 2017. 

On the 17th August 2017, in the orange hue of Brighton venue The Basement, local organisations joined forces to help young people broaden their skills and discover ways to get more out of their lives. This unique event saw crowds of 14 to 19 year-olds try their hands at new things, everything from portable pottery to screen-printing – all for free!

1UP Event
Pop Up Pottery © Chanelle Manton Photography

Staying true to its name, 1UP also hosted a range of innovative technologies to explore; one of which provided by BlockBuilders, an organisation who have developed a digital mapping system using Minecraft. This seemed a huge success among the attendees, for there was barely a spare computer. Users could also play in Virtual Reality mode. This appropriation of gaming technology to explore spaces using real geospatial data boasts real potential for the future of mapping and planning; success!

1UP Event
BlockBuilders © Chanelle Manton Photography
1UP Event
BlockBuilders © Chanelle Manton Photography

There was no shortage of music at 1UP. Reverbs and loops could be heard upon entrance to the venue, as ground-breaking music organisation AudioActive allowed attendees to try out a sound machine. I wasn’t brave enough to give it a go, but many were. It was incredibly encouraging to hear such budding talent fill the air, and to know I could have been watching some of the next big names in music production. Guitar hero could also be played at Health Bar, who create themed social gaming experiences for pop-up video game nights with a twist! Meanwhile, Rhythmix, a musical and social welfare charity providing musical opportunities for people in challenging circumstances, were also in attendance and an enlightening presence.

1UP Event
AudioActive © Chanelle Manton Photography
1UP Event
Health Bar © Chanelle Manton Photography
1UP Event
Rhythmix © Chanelle Manton Photography

As an Environmental Studies student, I was overjoyed to see organisations such as Brighton’s Peace and Environment Centre and The Sussex Wildlife Trust represented. Although perhaps disadvantaged at times by the more technological activities on offer, it was promising to hear that some of the attendees had signed up for voluntary work with these vital organisations (including myself!). Mental health advocates were also a necessary presence, such as Brighton & Hove Impetus and Right There.

Brighton Peace and Environment Centre © Chanelle Manton Photography

1UP was brought to Brighton & Hove as a joint initiative between three organisations, Our Future CityThe RSA, and Digitalme, to encourage young people to connect with creative learning opportunities within the city. Peter Chivers, Director of Our Future City, summarised the day well:

‘1UP was a tremendous success.  We saw young people taking part in interactive music workshops, live screen printing, pop up pottery and much more.  As a city we have an extraordinary range of creative activities for young people and 1UP really showcased the opportunities Brighton & Hove offers to improve their life chances through culture and creativity.’

The Verse was kindly invited to this event by Long Run Works, an organisation dedicated to facilitating the growth of new ideas. The atmosphere was flowing with energy and positivity, and it was an honour to be involved.

1UP Event


If you are interested in finding out more about any of the organisations involved, you can follow the relevant link below.

  • AudioActive – a ground-breaking music organisation, working with young people, at the meeting point of technology and contemporary urban culture
  • Brighton & Hove Impetus – a charity which connects people to reduce isolation & improve wellbeing
  • Brighton Peace & Environment Centre – an organisation that seeks to inspire, educate and connect people, communities and organisations to understand how their own lives link with those of others
  • Exploring Senses – is a non-profit Arts organisation who run fun creative activities, workshops and events using visual communication, participatory arts, craft, design, material knowledge, science, technology and social and digital media
  • Health Bar – a pop-up video game night with a twist! They create themed social gaming experiences for novice and seasoned gamers alike
  • Little Green Pig – a writing and mentoring charity for young people in Sussex, building confidence, communication and literacy skills
  • The Marlborough Theatre – Brighton & Hove’s leading theatre working with LGBTQ+ practitioners, supporting and presenting extraordinary performance by pioneering artists and local talent
  • Pop Up Pottery – Brighton’s portable pottery class, bringing fun into ceramics
  • Rhythmix – a music and social welfare charity that provides opportunities for music making to people in challenging circumstances
  • Right There – an innovative health and wellbeing project offering free resilience building activities to people aged 18-25 in Brighton & Hove
  • Starr Trust – an independent, family run charity, supporting young people aged 10-18 to fulfil their potential through sports, arts and education
  • StencilMoose – a screen print studio in the heart of Brighton that runs screen printing workshops.
  • Sussex Wildlife Trust – a conservation charity for everyone who cares about nature in Sussex that offers young people the chance to become a Youth Ranger



The Verse Staff

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