About Without Walls

Without Walls is a consortium of festivals and organisations dedicated to raising the profile of the UK outdoor arts sector, promoting artistic excellence and supporting innovative new work for the benefit of artists and audiences.

Company Vision, Mission and Values


Without Walls raises the artistic bar of UK outdoor arts ever higher, the diverse work it creates being recognised for innovation and wonder across the UK and overseas.


Without Walls leads excellence in outdoor arts through the creation of inspirational new work – from the intimate to the epic – of the highest quality by UK artists, touring this work to reach large, diverse and new audiences across the country.


Without Walls is committed to quality and innovation; values that run through everything the consortium does.

Established in 2007 as a partnership of five founding festivals, Without Walls has quickly evolved; from these five partners to two core networks, spanning 18 festivals, to 36 partners spanning three strategic groups in 2020.

Without Walls brings together artists, promoters and commissioners to make high-quality multi-arts outdoor shows – from the intimate to the epic – that tour to festivals across the UK and beyond. Without Walls nurtures talent and skills by researching, developing, supporting and touring new work, enhancing the growth of the sector, and reaching large audiences, many new to the arts. Since 2007, Without Walls has supported over 200 new shows. These have been made by artists that have been working at the heart of the outdoor arts sector for many years, and those new to working outdoors. Without Walls encourages artists to explore new ideas in a positive, supportive environment.

Without Walls champions and supports diverse work, with shows made by Black, Asian and ethnically diverse artists and D/deaf and Disabled artists. Many shows continue to tour nationally and internationally, contributing to the UK’s recognition as one of the leading countries for outdoor arts in Europe.

Over 3 million people have attended Without Walls consortium festivals over the past three years.  Without Walls partners represent the diversity of the outdoor arts festival sector; from the metropolitan centre of London to the banks of the River Tees in Stockton; from the woodland site of Just So to urban public spaces in Stoke, Doncaster and Skegness.

Without Walls is funded by Arts Council England as a National Portfolio Organisation.

The Without Walls Network in 2020

Artistic Directorate:

  • 101 Creation Space, Newbury
  • Brighton Festival
  • FESTIVAL.ORG, London
  • Freedom Festival Arts Trust, Hull
  • Hat Fair, Winchester
  • Just So Festival, Cheshire
  • Norfolk + Norwich Festival
  • Out There International Festival of Circus and Street Arts, Great Yarmouth
  • Salisbury International Arts Festival
  • Stockton International Riverside Festival

Touring Network Partnership:

  • Appetite, Stoke-On-Trent
  • The Arches Festivals Worcester, part of Severn Arts
  • Arts by the Sea, Bournemouth
  • Basingstoke Festival
  • Birmingham Hippodrome
  • First Art, Mansfield
  • Lancashire Encounter, Preston
  • Leicester City Council
  • Mouth Of The Tyne Festival, North Tyneside
  • Now Northwich, Cheshire Dance
  • Oldham Council
  • Rochdale Feel Good Festival
  • SO Festival, East Lincolnshire
  • Theatre Orchard, Somerset
  • Vision Redbridge Culture and Leisure
  • Wakefield Council
  • WE Great Place, Wentworth and Elsecar

Creative Development Network

  • 2021 Visual Arts, North Lincolnshire Arts Development
  • All in the Mind Festival, Basingstoke & Hampshire
  • Citadel Arts
  • Dancin’ Oxford
  • Ideas Test, Swale and Medway
  • Lincoln Performing Arts Centre
  • The Cultural Spring, South Shields
  • The Culture House, Grimsby


The strategic development and day to day management of Without Walls and its activity is managed by XTRAX.

XTRAX is an independent management and production company based in Manchester with over 15 years experience in Outdoor Arts. It is one of the Without Walls founder members in 2007 and has provided management and development services to Without Walls since 2012. The role of XTRAX includes regular reporting to and liaison with the partner festivals, the Chair, and the Board of Directors, and helping artists to create and tour ground-breaking new outdoor work.

Outside of Without Walls, XTRAX manages a portfolio of projects designed to promote the UK Outdoor Arts sector on the international stage.

For more information about XTRAX visit www.xtrax.org.uk