January 10th 2017: I met up with Monica Spencer, director of The Gaff, an independent black-box theatre space in the centre of Limerick. We were talking about using the space for an upcoming Free*Space research event. However, we began to talk about cultural policy, public space and forms of resistance in the city, and how those are playing out at the present time. Monica is involved with PLAN, a group of cultural practitioners whose criticism of Limerick 2014 led to some changes in the way that event was planned and managed, leading to a more inclusive and less corporate cultural programme. She is also currently the Chairperson of Creative Communities Limerick, an umbrella organisation for community development projects in Limerick to facilitate the incorporation of cultural practices and processes into their work. Monica is very tuned in to the community arts legacy, which is seeing a bit of a revival, particularly in Liverpool.
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