A LITTLE BIT OF HISTORY
In the early 1990’s, a small group of jugglers used to meet in the Cambridge Drama Centre on Covent Garden, Cambridge for a few hours on Sunday evenings. They were increasingly asked by Cambridge City Council to participate in city events and then invited to apply for funding which led to the formation of Cambridge Community Circus in 1992 as a non-profitmaking voluntary organisation, run by a management committee.
With a generous start-up and an annual grant CCC was able to purchase circus props and equipment, provide longer opening times and began to attract an ever increasing number of participants.
Cambridge Community Circus was set up to promote, teach and perform circus skills in Cambridge and the local area.
From the outset it aimed to be fully inclusive and open to all and it continues to be attended by a very wide range of people of all ages, of all backgrounds, with an equally wide range of abilities, skills and aspirations. In 2005 Cambridge Community Circus moved to the CityLife Building in Sturton Street which enabled it to offer practice sessions throughout the week and at weekends and run drop-in
sessions and structured, taught courses. Most importantly the CityLife building enabled CCC to have a permanent aerial rig and thus to offer a range of aerial activities – trapeze, rope, aerial hoop and silks. Participation continued to increase enormously as did outreach and youth projects.
The CityLife Building was sold in the summer of 2014 and, after an exhaustive search for a new home in Cambridge that would provide suitable space and the opportunity for aerial rigging, CCC were extremely fortunate to form a partnership with St George’s Church, Chesterton, our new home. This has provided an accessible venue with suitable space for activities and storage space and most importantly the opportunity to purchase and install a brand new, purpose built £18,000 aerial rig which has enabled CCC to offer trapeze, silks, rope and aerial hoop practice sessions, classes and courses at affordable rates. The new home has also enabled CCC to expand outreach and community participation, to work with local charities supporting disadvantaged young people and to run dedicated aerial courses for young people – the ‘Fledgling Flyers’.
At St George’s Church, CCC is now able to offer sessions on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings and Sunday afternoons and evenings. An extremely wide range of circus skills is taught and encouraged - juggling, diabolo, devilsticks, staff, poi, stilt-walking, unicycling, object manipulation, hand-balancing, hula hooping - as well as trapeze, silks, straps, rope and aerial hoop.
Many CCC members perform professionally and regularly teach and perform at festivals, private parties and for corporate clients as well as at juggling and aerial conventions both in the UK and abroad.
Much in demand at local events, providing accessible workshops, entertainment and performance, CCC has become a firm favourite at events such as The Mill Road Winter Fair, Chesterton Festival, The Milton Road Traders Association, The Cambridge Festival of Ideas, Strawberry Fair and numerous street parties and its members continue to provide workshops for a large number of schools, youth groups, community and voluntary organisations and charities in Cambridge and its surroundings. Cambridge Community Circus has always been proud of being fully inclusive and accessible to all and has worked with many organisations working with the disadvantaged and disabled. Workshops are truly inclusive, educational and fun and a proven way of building confidence and self-esteem, improving concentration and coordination and learning new skills.