Creativity is the heartbeat of Huddersfield and there’s a new network in town for creatives to get together to help and support each other.

Wilson’s Republic CIC has set up ‘creative bubbles’ which are mini peer support groups of just five people especially for those in the creative industries who want something different to traditional networking.

Wilson’s Republic CIC, set up in 2015, is Huddersfield’s creative network. The town has a wealth of creative talent with freelancers, agencies and individuals doing great work in their own fields that often goes unseen.

Wilson’s Republic, run by Darren Evans and Aidan Nolan, believed these talented individuals should get together more often and that eventually led to Creative Bubbles.

Darren and Aidan have hosted a series of events, the largest of which, WRConf, attracted 180 creatives in 2017. It was badged as Huddersfield’s first design conference.

Like many sectors, Covid had a huge effect on the creative industries with many freelancers and sole traders falling through the Government’s furlough scheme. After a research project commissioned by Kirklees Council to understand what business support the creative industries wanted, the idea to set up Creative Bubbles was conceived and the first cohort proved a big success.

Now, with continued support from Kirklees Council’s Creative Development Team, Kirklees Year of Music 2023 and the Gainshare Fund, the next cohort is being invited to sign up for new Bubbles starting in February.

Darren said: “Creative Bubbles is a community of support for creative businesses, led by creative businesses. We heard that traditional business support didn’t fit what creative businesses wanted. It’s not always about financial growth.

“The Bubbles are a great way to enrich an already diverse community, connecting more people who wouldn’t normally meet in a large event. The intimacy of each Bubble allows people to come to our twice-yearly Wilson’s events knowing others in the area.”

Each Bubble consists of five individuals from different creative disciplines. The Bubble consists of three, one-hour sessions spread over three consecutive weeks. It meets on the same day and time each week. Sessions are held online using Google Meet and diarised at either 6pm or 7pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Aidan added: “Each Bubble brings together an eclectic mix of business owners, freelancers and other creative practitioners to share their experiences, discuss the challenges of running a creative business and forge new opportunities for collaboration.

“The aim is to strengthen the creative community across Huddersfield and the wider Kirklees district. Therefore we want to reach as many people as possible.

“Each session is facilitated to maintain timekeeping, conversation flow and ensure everyone gets to contribute.”

The Bubbles are open to anyone living or working in Kirklees in what could loosely be termed ‘creative’ industries. That could be design, performing arts, fashion, textiles, film, photography, music, architecture and many more.

Joining a Bubble is free and all it requires is your time and commitment. To sign up go to