What we do

We deliver cultural projects and uncover new possibilities in public life, business, education, community, environment and well-being. We solve problems. It’s a holistic approach. We create space where new things can happen. New relationships. New confidences.

“I cannot find enough superlatives to describe the job you did for the whole team and the skilful way you went about it... I have never had an event that has generated so much positive comment from my team - a massive thank you from me, but I know that comes from the whole team too”

Stephen Smith, HR Director, Lloyds Banking Group

We’ve worked for government, local authorities, big business, small enterprises, communities, charities and campaigning organisations. We’re a not-for-profit company and currently applying to become a charity.

Our work…

making international carnival

The National Eisteddfod of Wales and Welsh Government’s international tourism agency Visit Wales asked us to kick off the 2018 National Eisteddfod in Cardiff with a bang. We produced and directed the opening outdoor celebration, working with local communities, championing the international story of Wales’ connection with the world. It was an astonishingly vibrant summer night carnival. The Eisteddfod said that, in living memory, they had never experienced an atmosphere like it. The next day the BBC broadcast calls for the event to be recreated.   Here’s a quick film that gives a glimpse of the party.

Developing facilitators

developing facilitators

We help people to become facilitators. And leaders. We also offer world class facilitation development. In any organisation new things happen because of the quality of conversation. Confidence transforms the way people do things. We’ve years of experience in unlocking potential and unleashing fresh energies and helping people to grow in confidence. Clients include universities, public sector, banks and industry. Sometimes we work in tough conditions, with hard problems, but we’re always discovering understanding, people and vision that help to bring clarity, movement and commitment. Our work is person-centred, and we develop those conversations into community and new possibilities. We’ve worked with leaders, senior managers, teams and individuals over the years. Our success is built on the ability to take leading organisational theory and make it simple, personal, relational. We help you create the culture you need, from within. With the people you work with. Personal development. Team development. Of course, every job is different, because every person and team is different. Chat to us about developing facilitators and facilitative culture where you work. We’re sure we can help.

coaching conversations & management development

Conversation is the basis of coaching culture. Wonderful vision and strategy is no good if you can’t transform it into productive working relations with dynamic groups of colleagues. Talking, listening and reflecting together is at the heart of human enterprise. Even brilliant individualists need to work within community. Richard, the founder of Coleridge in Wales, developed and wrote the national coaching based induction programme for postmen and postwomen for Royal Mail. He’s worked with many organisations at all levels to explore how to generate ideas from existing problems, release energy and bring working community into healthy focus. He’s comfortable in the boardroom, management conferences and spending time in the basic operations of companies and public organisations. We offer management development and leadership consultancy, and also “coaching conversations” for individuals and teams – a chance for your organisation to reflect on how you can transform your culture in a way that works for you and your situation.

creative new thinking

We work with leading thinkers and writers. We’re comfortable in intellectual, academic and political circles. We’ve delivered lectures, talks and symposia in the USA and British universities, Royal Geographic Society, made an address at an international conference in Oxford University, gave a keynote lecture on relationship at work to the World Congress on Total Quality Management and co-hosted a conference with Cambridge University. We specialise in the philosophy of relationship in culture and public life.

working for Eden Project & Jo Cox Foundation

The Eden project and the Jo Cox Foundation wanted to bring communities together across Wales joining them up in a great big walk from Yorkshire through Wales ending in Cardiff. They invited us to lead the adventure. And we walked and celebrated every day for three weeks across the country. The Eden Project believes we are stronger to face the environmental challenges ahead if we live in strong communities. Coleridge in Wales’ Richard led the great big walk meeting remarkable people who everyday come out of their houses and do amazing things to allow community to flourish where they live. The start of the walk from Yorkshire through Wales was broadcast live on the BBC’s  The One Show with Richard singing the Welsh national anthem.

a visionary national festival

Wales has a huge contribution to make to questions of international sustainability, economy, relationship, landscape and culture. We wondered if some of the anxieties of institutions in the capital city Cardiff fully reflect the different ways that life is lived in the hills, valleys and coastal plains of Wales. So in 2016 we set out on an 80 day adventure around the country to celebrate the culture and communities of Wales. It was an 80 day festival to discover the hidden human treasures of our national life and explore how Welsh language culture in its history, literature and current traditions give insights into the big questions of our age.

We teamed up with universities, museums, schools, communities, politicians, businesses, environmentalists, artists, poets, adventurers to conduct the eighty day festival which travelled all over Wales holding events in national institutions, fields, community centres, towns and in pubs. Many thousands took part. The conversations still continue. The work was called the Coleridge in Wales Festival, and it gave the name to our organisation today.

creative learning in schools

The Arts Council of Wales asked us to mentor schools in exploring creative approaches to learning for Wales’ new curriculum. Working with students and school communities we oversaw the development and completion of dynamic successful projects that created a forest school outdoor learning venture, engaged with vulnerable children to improve engagement through the employment of psychotherapists and play, an animation project that developed literacy confidence and competence, and the design of a beautiful stone mosaic with an internationally experienced mosaic artist which led a school to explore how they respond to the idea of strangers, and how we are connected to each other in our common humanity.

a new Library in Wales

There’s a vital difference between “people” and “things”! And if you treat people like “things” or “objects” then complications often occur. Straight away or down the line.  Although this may be obvious in our everyday personal lives, wider British culture has struggled with this problem for hundreds of years in public life.

We’re working with the community in the small coastal town of Llantwit Major in South Wales. In partnership with the historic St Illtud’s church, which was a celebrated Celtic learning establishment in the 6th century, we’ve established a new library to help with this area of human endeavour. It seeks to provide resources and opportunities in the 21st century. It’s a quiet place, for reflection and discussion. And reading, of course! It’s called the Library at Llantwit. Housed in a 13th century medieval gatehouse the Library is home to the Coleridge in Wales Archive and also a remarkable collection of books by the internationally renowned biblical scholar and theologian John Rogerson. The Library is an associate centre of Cambridge University’s Centre for the Study of Platonism. With these collections we invite people from all walks of life, from differing faith traditions and none, from differing political and cultural outlooks to come together to explore how being human is essentially a relational condition. And how this changes ways in which we might talk, think and act together.

It’s a place where people can ask some of the big questions about life and perhaps discover a tradition with a long pedigree that has been largely ignored in the past 240 years of mainstream British cultural history, but yet, somehow, seems comfortable and at home in Wales.

opening landscapes

We’re currently working with Welsh Government funding from Visit Wales to tell the amazing stories of differing faith traditions, from old historic Roman and Celtic sites, to the age of the saints, the medieval period, the rise of Non-Conformism and the great world religions that have come to Wales in the modern period. It’s a community treasure hunt that allows visitors and locals to get to know the landscape of South Wales.

Website and introduction film

journeys of the faith traditions

The Diocese of Llandaff, part of the Church in Wales, asked us if we could help with a project to run alongside the Visit Wales funded Landscapes of faith project.  And we were delighted to respond and help. We’ve created a project for  them called Journeys in Faith, funded by the Allchurches Trust, in which we’re conducting a piece of facilitation that seeks to help Christian traditions find more public confidence to be the church in the cultural landscape in which they find themselves. In this specialist work Coleridge in Wales deploys its skills and expertise in philosophy, relationship and culture.

In the tradition of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, who was a brilliant and major British theologian, we boast robust theological excellence and cultural insights in our approach to this work and recognise that these are sometimes lacking across many traditional religious organisations. 

public art commissions

We were asked to create new public art for the City of Newport to celebrate the 1839 Chartist movement that gives Newport such an important place in the history of world democracy.  We carved footsteps in the street where thousands of working people marched and were then shot at by soldiers. We designed and installed the new Chartist Milestone in Westgate Square, Newport which connects everyday life of people in the city to the heart of the principles of democracy.

We’ve also made art and performance in the National Gallery of Wales, Cardiff, Rhode Island School of Design, USA, and the French Embassy, London.