Creative & Digital Sector Forum September 2022

4theRegion members met with businesses and organisations across South West Wales to share perspectives, experiences and opportunities in the creative and digital sector.

We really believe that the creative sector has a big role to play, in creating opportunities for young people, making the region a vibrant place to live, and pooling skills and talent for the benefit of local communities!

We invited experts in the industry, including Helen Bowden, Ffion Rees from Telesgop, Racheal Wheatley from Waters Creative, and Carys Ifan from Canolfan S4C Yr Egin.

You can catch up on the wide-ranging discussion about the creative and digital sector, skills, and opportunities in our region by watching the event recording or reading the event notes.


Catch up on the full event recording and hear from regional organisations who are doing great work in our region’s thriving media sector. Click the video at the timestamps listed below to jump to their appropriate segment.

0:09:00: Helen Bowden, Voiceover Artist
0:30:00: Ffion Rees, Telesgop
0:24:00: Tony Dowling, Real Inbound
0:30:30: Rachael Wheatley, Waters Creative
0:57:00: Carys Ifan, Canolfan S4C Yr Egin

Subscribe to our Youtube channel and save our Creative & Digital playlist to be notified when new videos are uploaded.

Thematic Priorities


  • We’re lucky to have many universities and colleges with high standards of teaching creative subjects.
  • We need to promote a wide range of opportunities to young people.
  • Visiting schools and inspiring future generations is key to the growth of the creative sector.
  • Boards such as the Creative Industries Board can identify challenges and help shape the curriculum.
  • Educators within schools and colleges are not always the best place to know exactly what opportunities exist.
  • There needs to be more emphasis on the importance of Foundational courses, which are vital for experimentation and creativity.


  • We need to understand what opportunities are available in the region.
  • What networks are available out there for creatives to develop their practice?
  • Platforms such as Discover Creative Careers are great examples of showcasing creative and digital opportunities in Wales.
  • How do creatives increase their visibility in the region?
  • It would be great to have access to a regional creative hub and engage with local businesses.
  • Businesses should be thinking more creatively about how they get their message out there.
  • Short videos and explainer videos are becoming increasingly important on social media.
  • Communication and marketing are not only key for the creative sector, but for all businesses.


  • How do we address industry-wide skills shortages in the UK?
  • How can we get the message across about jobs that people may not know exist?
  • Businesses can take ownership of skills shortages by training and upskilling new recruits.
  • It’s been drilled into people to go into STEM sectors, but we also need to sell our creative sector.
  • As a region, we have new advantages in the digital age to tap into. The digital revolution has provided more opportunities for people to become entrepreneurs, publishers, broadcasters, etc.
  • Home working has presented a challenge with upskilling new creatives effectively. Ideas, concepts, and suggestions aren’t often shared as freely over digital meetings or team chats.
  • Venues such as Yr Egin can provide space for SMEs and freelancers across different creative sectors to collaborate.
  • As an alternative to home working, we could also use public libraries and spaces to work in. Paid hot-desking spaces are an immediate barrier for many.
  • How can we creatively think about public spaces and support innovation, design, and economic wellbeing?


  • Innovation requires creativity to be successful.
  • Unfortunately for the creative industry, when recessions hit people tend to stop spending on design, innovation, and creativity.
  • We need to promote the fact that the creative industries are where money needs to be spent all the time.
  • How do we strengthen the industry’s resilience in the changing times, how do we address problems creatively?
  • Traditionally, STEM and arts have sat as separate entities, but creativity and innovation go hand in hand with sciences and other sectors.
  • Innovation without design is like fish without chips.
  • How can we ‘creatively’ balance salaries with the cost of living to make sure that entering into the creative sector is as attractive as possible?


    4theRegion supports Design Swansea, a free monthly social event for creatives, businesses and students with guest speakers. This event is ideal for creatives to network and continue conversations surrounding the sector! Follow Design Swansea on Eventbrite to stay updated with upcoming events.

    We are also holding an event on the 22nd of September to continue the conversation around young people, skills, and ways organisations are empowering them. Get your free tickets for Future of the Region and share what you do to support young people in the region!

    Click here to subscribe to our newsletter and select “Creative & Digital Economy” to receive updates about work from us and our partners in this space.

    Please do get in touch with 4theRegion to tell us about your work in the creative and digital sector in South West Wales, or to share challenges and ideas about what more is needed.