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Unleash your creative side

Have you been inspired by Basingstoke Festival or the Streets Alive trail?

Is there an inner artist waiting to be unleashed or a voice waiting to be heard? Have you always wanted to pick up a paint brush? We’ve pulled together a list of the choirs, drama groups and art classes in Basingstoke and Deane specifically designed for beginners or those that have a past hobby and want to get back involved.

Arts and craft classes 

Rachel Davis, one of the Streets Alive artists and curator at THAT Gallery, runs a weekly guided painting and drawing group at Westside Community Centre on Mondays with availability in the afternoon session. Find her at Oakridge West Community Centre on a Wednesday morning (10am to 12.30pm) for a community art session. All ages and abilities welcome and this is a pay as you go session. Drop a line to for more information or to sign up. Join a five week drawing and painting course at Tadley Library starting mid September.

Liam Kelleher, another Streets Alive artist, runs Azure Art Academy. These 10-week art courses are suitable for both beginners and more experienced artists. The next courses start in September. The courses cover a range of different techniques, from how to hold a pencil and the fundamentals of drawing, to painting in the style of a famous artist. They also cover a wide range of subjects and mediums such as watercolour, acrylic and charcoal. If a 10-week course is a bit long for you then take a look at one-day workshops or Wine and Paint evenings.

Creative Art Classes in Basingstoke run art classes for adults and students who are absolute beginners to improvers. They teach students the basics as well as lots of different techniques using mediums such as graphite pencils, charcoal, watercolour, acrylic, gouache, soft pastels…. a different project each week. Each lesson begins with a demonstration from their tutor, and then students are given plenty of 1-to-1 tuition during the session. The classes are held at Viables Community Centre.

If you fancy trying jewellery making, then both Hampshire School of Jewellery and Bumble and Bee run classes suitable for beginners.

For a more informal craft evening take a look at Drink and Do at the Duck and Tipple. A regular event, where materials are provided, offering a great opportunity to create, drink, make friends. Or try Knit and Knatter at Tadley Library, a free group that meets every fortnight on a Friday 10am to 12 noon. You’ll need to take your own wool, needles and patterns but new knitters of all ages are welcomed.


The A Cappella group is a fantastic and fun group that meets at Rooksdown Community Centre on Thursday evenings 8pm until 10pm during term time. This is an adult group, with members of all ages that aims for fun first. You can find them singing everything from Ed Sheeran, Anne-Marie and Wheatus to classics like Elvis and The Beach Boys. They sing in three sections, High, Mid and Low voices and the choir is run by Andrew, Colin and Martin who sing with each section.

Sing for Fun rehearses at Proteus Creation Space on Mondays. No need to audition to join, it’s just about having fun. If you are new to Sing For Fun you can book a free taster session to see what they’re all about! Keep an eye on their website for details of the new term.

Hampshire Harmony meets on a Monday at Everest Community Academy. If you are interested in joining you can pop along to one of their rehearsals to give it a try.

Amateur dramatics

If you’ve always fancied treading the boards then Basingstoke Amateur Theatrical Society (BATS) welcomes new members. You’ll need to audition; find out more on the BATS websiteOverton Dramatic Society is a small, friendly society based in Overton that produces at least two shows per year. If you want to find out how to get involved, then get in touch via their website.


According to Happy Feet Dance Academy ‘no one is ever too old to learn to dance’. They’ve been running adult tap and jazz classes for 25 years and welcome newcomers and those looking to refresh earlier dancing skills.  Their adult classes offer a welcoming and friendly environment and public performances and show participation is entirely optional.

Meraki Dance runs a beginners/ improvers adult tap class. Great for those who have done tap before and want to get back into it or for those who never got the opportunity to learn. They are based at Westside Community Centre.

Ceroc Newbury – Kingsclere meets at the Fieldgate Centre on Thursday evenings. The session starts at 7.30pm with a beginner induction before the beginners’ lesson starts at 7.45pm.

Inspired by Strictly? Alchemy Dance Company runs beginner Salsa classes at Oakridge Hall. Their next six week course starts on 13 July 2023!

Know of any other classes or courses we can include? Please email us at

Please note the inclusion of any business within this listing should not be seen as an endorsement of their services. Whilst the information is considered to be true and correct at the date of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of the information.

July 2022, updated May 2023

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