About Us

A place to spend time, to discover new ideas, new work and new experiences... on the banks of the Thames

Watermans is West London’s arts centre. Our mission is to bring communities together through cultural practise and we exist to enrich lives through the arts and creativity.

We present a thriving year-round programme of cinema, fringe theatre, exhibitions and workshops in our stunning riverside location in Brentford, opposite Kew Gardens. We are an independent charity with a wide outreach programme across Hounslow and beyond too, reaching tens of thousands of people who would otherwise enjoy little or no arts provision, and working with them to build community through the arts.

Our Brentford venue houses an independent cinema, 250-seat theatre, contemporary art gallery and creative spaces for the community. In our cinema, find the latest movies, as well as festivals and talks. In our theatre, discover children’s theatre, cabaret, dance, fringe theatre and digital performance. And in our gallery, a year-round programme of free exhibitions focusing on digital arts. We aim to showcase the very best of arts and culture in West London.

Our large riverside cafe and restaurant – including a gorgeous outdoor riverside terrace – is the perfect place to while away a day by the river, or chill out before or after a show. The food is freshly-prepared Indian, with a range of Indian bar snacks at the bar and a fabulous-value Express Lunch if you’re in a rush, and children’s menu available.

Beyond our venue, discover Bell Square, our outdoor arts venue in Hounslow Town Centre, where we present fortnightly free performances May-December. We also run the major Arts Council-funded Creative People and Places programme in Hounslow. Our 10-year vision is to build a confident, colourful and creative Hounslow, and we are well on the way already. You can read more about our CPP Hounslow work here.

Watermans is a social enterprise and holder of the Social Enterprise Mark. This means that any money we make is ploughed back into providing events and opportunities to take part for the whole community.

We are also an independent charity. You can find out about our income streams, board of trustees and much more on the Charity Commission website here.

We believe it isn’t just important to reach audiences, but to get audiences to take part in the Arts. This idea drives everything we do. It means that there are always things to do here for people from all walks of life. It means that we make a point of catering for minority groups, disabled groups and marginalised groups. It also means that we treat these groups just like everybody else. We give them the same access and opportunities but we also have the same expectations for them.

We deliver an extensive learning and participation programme for young people which offers over 2000 sessions per year with attendances of over 50,000.  Programmes are typically focused on creative skills development, raising aspirations and introducing young people to creative employment opportunities.

We are passionate about taking arts and culture outside to places where people naturally gather, such as at the outdoor venue we operate in Hounslow:  Bell Square.  Or seeking out new audiences in places where you don’t usually expect to see the Arts, such as our leading role in Hounslow’s Creative People and Places programme.

Come and visit – we look forward to welcoming you!

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