Skip to content

CCCH Past & Present

We are a collective of creative companies and individuals who collaborate & co-mentor. We share resources and ideas. Our collective vision is to promote, inspire and create work we’re proud of and assist others along the path. Extraordinary work has emerged from CCCH across several disciplines. Globally respected work of the highest calibre. Major artwork, popular Google collaborations and chart topping music amongst the long list.

The hub was formed organically as a de facto collective sometime in the 1980s or possibly earlier. No one is quite sure. For sure, the magazine ‘Overall There is a Smell of Fried Onions’, the precursor of Left Lion, was based here. And our once resident goths, Trev and Mark, set us firmly on the darkside global radar back in the 80s and 90s. They’re now part of our extended virtual community. CCCH has always been a very broad church. Inclusive from its inception.

We formalised our tenants’ association in 2013 under imminent threat of eviction from our landlords Nottingham City Council, who still haven’t delivered on their subsequent promise, live on BBC TV, to invest a little in these beautiful grade 2 listed buildings… and give us the security we need to allow us to invest in our business units.

We’ve had zero funding to date, so truly sustainable. Actually, we did win a £50k bid from Scape/D2N2, but several years down the line we’ve still not seen our landlords translate this grant award for the buildings into the intended bricks and mortar improvement works. To date our expertise in the infrastructure of various creative disciplines and in mentoring creative SMEs, continues to be overlooked. This may simply be because expertise is generally sought from those who have successful relationships with funding bodies, rather than success in just being solvent startups & SMEs… or self-sustainably being an artist. Strange but true.

So we get on doing what we do – making great apps, backends, art, music, clothes, designs, podcasts, video, websites etc that get paid &/or get noticed. We specifically (mostly informally) mentor young people, graduates and creative startups. Sharing savvy business skills and high level creative practice CPD alike. Some of our members have long experience in FE & HE – at De Montfort University, Nottingham College, Nottingham Trent University (Confetti) and the University of Nottingham. 

Our Creative Vision Of Nottingham

We understand graduate retention better than most. Our graduate & lecturing members know the structures & vibe that helped keep us here. Those structures were in dreadful decline even before the SME/arts craziness that 2020 brought. Of course, we also have creatives who just get on… without ever getting on the HE treadmill. Quals are not  an indicator of creative impetus or even potential. In our sectors you’re only as good as your last output.

Affordable studio space is a shockingly rare commodity in Nottingham – especially music studios. But there’s so much dead or dying retail space with the units above them given scant regard unless they can be sold for student flats. These were once classic mixed creative zones. Crucial ‘beachheads’ of ad-hoc and really affordable rental. That’s exactly how CCCH started.  Essentially our units above the shops were unlettable to anything other than … well us and our predecessors!  The noisy, messy, erratic-hours ones that will put up with very basic space close to the city centre. 

Problem is now these spaces are ‘curated’ they are either prohibitively expensive or simply non existent. We need a return to letting basic, legal-standard creative spaces at low prices with contracts that flex to include sharing and potentially high turnover rates as folks genuinely try their best … and sometime fail.  There are no guarantees – just opportunities.

Expensive co-working spaces with a swanky reception & their own beer pong are not necessarily creative hubs. Topdown corporate-style hierarchies don’t fare well in this sector. Flat, peer-leadership that encourages development way beyond the limits of the nominal leaders & mentors is far better. But many of those who seem to want to lead the line in encouraging creative startups simply don’t have experience of this flat management and mentoring style; and they don’t seem to want to reach out and partner with anyone except those with , eg Arts Council or big-biz chops.

The result for many years has been, essentially, varying degrees of what have been referred to as ‘vanity projects’, that result in pricing startups out of their overly formal round-peg-square-hole spaces.  Sure there are some successes too, like Sneinton Market. But in short, as far as encouraging a groundswell of creative startups goes, herding cats ain’t a sane business strategy. Disruptors are a huge potential asset, not upstarts to be boxed n coxed into current prescriptive business orthodoxy. It takes nouse to facilitate a future which is not necessarily a new level of the same game…

We are currently exploring ways to open doors.  To initiate a substantive discussion with the council and other relevant partners about how we might move forward sustainably to achieve reasonable security for our enterprise and our lovely buildings. The security that all businesses need to facilitate investment. So that we can plan our future… and help Nottingham & its creatives.

Our Creative Community

Da Sunlounge is a DJ and house music producer.

Dealmaker Records

Dealmaker records started life at CCCH in 2003 with help from the mentoring scheme run by the musicians and producers at Sirkus Studios The label has morphed into the stuff of Nottingham legends – Scorzayzee amongst them. GagstaWraps enyone?

Derek Hampson - Artist

Derek Hampson is an artist based at Wollaton Street Studios here at CCCH. He’s also an academic, writer & curator with an interest in philosophy; particularly the work of Martin Heidegger

Denise Weston - Artist

Denise Weston was a founding member of Oldknows Studio Group in Nottingham and was involved in setting up and curating exhibitions at Oldknows Gallery, an artist-run exhibition space. She works from CCCH as a practising artist and has exhibited both nationally and internationally. Denise’s work is included in both public and private collections, including the Bibliotheque Nationale Paris & Arts Council England

Contact entuition

entuition embeds creativity into the project management and communication strategies of community, educational and environmental initiatives

Floating Point Interaction Design

Floating Point is the ident of freelance interaction designer / creative coder Brendan Oliver, who was based at CCCH for several years. He is now works out of Primary, another awesome creative hub at Canning Circus. major gigs for Google & Disney are just the start of the story….

full beam productions

full beam productions working out of Sirkus Studios  is the front of house management for Simon Paterson’s independent musical endeavours. Associate Prof of music at the UoN, he’s much more than just a damn fine bass player.

Head KIcks Records

Head Kicks Records is an independent deep house record label


Hhymn are a Nottingham-based band composed of Ed Bannard and Simon Ritchie who first got together in early 2008.  They have Gained plaudits from the likes of Tom Robinson (BBC6) and Matt Horne, who booked the band for his ‘Session’ in London

Inland Knights

Inland Knights are house DJs, producers and label owners Andy Riley and Laurence Ritchie. Resident for many years at CCCH and still part of the crew

Kaos corsets website

Kaos corsets is a fashion retailer, established in 1992, dedicated to creating a range of affordable and beautifully designed basques, waspies and corsets.   All their stock is  individually hand made in the UK at Kaos’ Nottingham studio at CCCH

KJAMM Professional Mixing & Mastering + Record Label

KJAMM provides pro mixing & mastering services plus a record label specialising in launching new & upcoming talent. Home to Karl Robin Junga, CCCH Chair. Operating out of Sirkus Studios . He’s a seasoned veteran of work on tracks for Bowie, Electronic, Gong, New Order, Nightmares On Wax, … & Nottingham’s very own Broxtowe boy Whycliffe. Recently busy mastering & mixing upcoming talent like Nottingham’s J Littles & Rudi, Sheffield’s Lee McMahon (LPMC), LA based Roze McQueen, and labels and artists across the globe.

The Littlemen

The Littlemen are DJs Steve and Guy, who have been DJing on the UK free party scene, clubs and festivals since 1993

Mowgli Wild Boys. Well they’re wild, but they’re currently resident in one of our studios – to be heard working on their eclectic material into the wee small hours. Expect them unleashed ‘pon a post pandemic live music apocalypse. Actually, their broader identity is a colabing collective of talented lads & lasses with more insider knowledge on the local taleways than anyone should store in their grey matter. Thus a fantastic resource to the others at CCCH in more ways than just plumbing and drumming, which they’re also ninjas at…

Layout 1

Mobiletrax is a dance music record label

Myna Music

Myna music is a deep house record label

Nina Smith is a professional vocalist, recording artist, vocal coach & artist mentor. Now launching the careers of some of Nots”brightest talent. She worked out of Sirkus, CCCH for a while, and was even the cleaner there for a stint. She still comes back regularly for mastering services for her work.

Positive Divide at Beatport

Positive Divide is DJ/producer and vocalist Steve Lee. Originally from Liverpool, he now lives in Nottingham and works at his studio, which is situated in the Wollaton Street Studios building

Recharge Audio website

Artist, producer and engineer Leon Bailey of Recharge Audio launched from Sirkus Studios and is now making big waves down in the Bristol creative community. Mixing & mastering hot new output. Still in close touch & one of several links within the hub to the cultural force that is the Bristol scene.

Rob Greco guitar tuition

Rob Greco works out of Event studios at CCCH and is qualified to teach guitar at all levels.  He’ s highly experienced at helping people of all ages and abilities to learn to play guitar. He’s also a qualified IT specialist with SEO skills

Ron Basejam is the alter-ego of UK producer James Baron, well known as the co-founder of uber-discoists Crazy P. Ron Basejam has become a code-word for a certain brand of detailed, pristinely produced disco-tech music. Full of attention to detail, serious low-end heft, and distinctive, idiosyncratic sampling.

Sirkus - Sound People website

Sirkus Studios is a cooperative of musicians, producers and artists established in 1997. It offers highest quality professional production, mixing & mastering. A studio that rips up the recording rule book by putting musicians first. With a long credit list of top artists and record labels.

WholesomeFish website

Wholesome Fish were established in 1998 and comprise (at least) four great singer/songwriters, accompanied by a host of traditional instruments (fiddle, harmonica, accordion, banjo and guitar (to name but a few) and underpinned by a cooking rhythm section, Wholesome Fish create music to DANCE to.  Their influences span a world of tastes, from Celtic and gypsy-rooted folk through to Cajun, bluegrass, boogie-blues and punk

Wollaton Street Studios

 Wollaton Street Studios is an artists’ cooperative with internationally acclaimed output

Zola Day Music

Zola Day Music is owned and managed by Kate Rounding.  A multi-instrumentalist, composer, studio engineer and musical educationalist, Kate is also an animateur, using music to bring people and national, local and international communities together. She worked out of Sirkus Studios for many years and still collaborates with CCCH members regularly on music and education projects with national organisations such as Youth Music.

Our Creative Biome

The Dragon. Awesome boozer since the 80s. West-side cultural hub par excellence. Open late and at the bottom of the hill – a real gravitational advantage as the evening wears on. Aunit keeps us sane and offers great ale & gardening tips alongside being one of Nottingham’s most prolific lemon slice collectors. Fantastic hospitality. She runs a tight ship and makes short shrift of idiots..without a bouncer in sight. All part of an evening’s entertainment.

Hand and Heart

Great to have you back after a chang e of hands Hand & Heart! A gem of a pub on Derby Road.  Set in caves, featuring live music and good local ale with thhee kitchen set to opeen in 2024

The Monkey, oh sorry the Organ Grinder to non locals. Very mixed crowd, great local ales and a large suntrap rooftop beer terrace big enough for a herd of cats to swing their tails

The Music Inn. Great for sales & those sustainable repairs and a proverbial stone’s throw from us. Where else we gonna buy our guitar strings?

Tough Mary’s Bakehouse. Urban sourdough warrior. Mary helps to sustain our creative brain cells and environment alike

Mel’s team at Soul Hairdressing have been keeping some of our hair on for years. All the goss and handy for some rocket fuel as well if our coffee runs out. Get yer best boogaloo barnet on mi ducks.

Windblowers website

About to cgange hands after decades. Located on Derby Road, Windblowers has offered the largest selection of Sheet Music and Wind Instruments in the Midlands.   All of their staff are friendly, highly experienced and knowledgeable plus they have their own fully qualified instrument repairers who offer specialist attention to your instrument. Invaluable for our music sisters & brothers at CCCH

The Worm That Turned

The Worm That Turned provides garden consultancy, design and installation, as well as retailing creative garden supplies. Stuart is also a top bloke