About Upstart

Langholm is recovering from a difficult 2018. The town is looking to the future and asking ‘what will happen next?’ Upstart is a project committed to ensuring that the important voices of Millennials (22 - 40 years old) and Generation Z (13 - 21 years old) are involved in developing the plan for the future.

What does the future look like?

There are opportunities to replace and renew vacant properties across the town. To breathe life into forgotten spaces, create a connected and inviting atmosphere for visitors, and to introduce exciting new facilities for people of all ages to enjoy.

The New Ideas Office

Upstart is based at The New Ideas Office, in the former Post Office building on the High Street - a space designed to represent one of many possible futures. The New Ideas Office takes the form of a contemporary cafe, creating an unexpected space for casual conversations with friends old and new about the future of Langholm. Drop by during our opening times to take part in the project, enjoy some food & drink and peruse our selection of design, fashion and fitness magazines.

Take Over

To allow young people in Langholm to actively 'signpost' the future direction of Langholm, OutPost Arts are hosting a one day Take Over event across several High Street spaces. Delivering participatory and interactive sessions, the Take Over event is family focused with dress up, arts and crafts (including printmaking and window painting) and of course locally sourced food, so come along and bring the kids to enjoy a creative fun day out!

Upstart is a Making Places project established by SURF to develop a new Community Action Plan for Langholm. Led by Pidgin Perfect, in collaboration with OutPost Arts, this Scottish Government funded project invites people of all ages between March and April 2019 to take part in a range of events to help shape the future of Langholm.

Upstart will result in a plan of action for what should happen next in Langholm.


Want to help shape the future of Langholm?

Here are some ways you can get involved.

Meet our team at The New Ideas Office - join us for a chat over brunch or learn more about our thinking during our Design Cafe. You can also complete our quick online survey to make sure your voice is heard.

You can find below a list of all the events. Click on each individual event for more information and for book your spot.

Come along for your chance to win one of two £25 Vue Cinema vouchers!
Click here to find out more.

Saturday 23rd March
11am - 1pm
The New Ideas Office, High Street, Langholm

Join us for a free brunch and share your ideas for the future.

Book your spot!
Design Cafe
Saturday 30th March
11am - 1pm & 2 - 4pm
The New Ideas Office, High Street, Langholm

Exploring developing ideas for Langholm and enjoy free speciality coffee & tea.

Book your spot!
Mystery Box
Saturday 6th April
11am - 2pm
The New Ideas Office, High Street, Langholm

We’re hosting a creative product making workshop for up to 15 people, led by a special guest designer… but who?

Book your spot!
Take Over
Saturday 6th April
11am - 3pm
High Street, Langholm

OutPost Arts are hosting a one day Take Over event across several High Street spaces. Delivering participatory and interactive sessions, the Take Over event is family focused with dress up, arts and crafts and much more!

Register your interest!

Take our Survey

We want to ensure that your voice is heard. Our short survey examines your experiences of Langholm, and what you believe could be improved for the future.

The survey will remain open until Saturday 6th April.

Launch Survey

Who we are


Marc was born and raised in Glasgow and trained as an architect in the UK and Czech Republic. He worked for Studio Daniel Libeskind in New York before establishing Pidgin Perfect in 2011. Outwith Pidgin Perfect, Marc is a health & fitness fanatic who participates personal training programmes and running clubs. He is a proud supporter of many LGBTQI+ initiatives across the UK.

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Abi had previously studied product design in Glasgow before she had turned her interest to design for engaging communities. She has a particular passion for engaging with younger audiences and holds a strong interest in engaging with mental health and disability topics... and Made In Chelsea.

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Duncan trained as an architect and worked for Richard Murphy Architects before joining Pidgin Perfect in 2013. Outside of Pidgin Perfect, Duncan recently completed his MPhil thesis exploring open source and architectural practice. He is often found tinkering with technology.

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Clara trained as a graphic designer in London, and worked in the design sector there before relocating to Glasgow and joining Pidgin Perfect in 2016. Clara’s first job after university was at a karaoke bar where she had to wrestle microphones away from over enthusiastic singers until the early hours. Outside of Pidgin Perfect Clara is an accomplished perfumer, running workshops and creating bespoke perfumes from her studio. She also knows a lot about kpop.

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Originally from Edinburgh before moving to Langholm in 2012, Lucy had a successful career as a fashion illustrator and artist before setting up OutPost Arts in 2018. She gets excited about mid century anything, art, music, film and TV (both 'good' AND unashamedly bad) and has a borderline dangerous Tic-Tac addiction. Lucy is thrilled to be working directly with the community of Langholm to help identify key issues and drive forward positive change.

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Born and raised in Langholm, Jason studied psychology and sociology at Queen Margaret Uni in Edinburgh before settling back here and working with the Langholm Initiative. Jason’s job involves managing an anti-poverty and employability project and making sure that young people have a voice in the community. In between binge-watching Netflix documentaries and listening to questionable 80s pop music, Jason loves visiting art galleries and live music.

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Pidgin Perfect

Pidgin Perfect is an award winning architecture practice based in Glasgow. They are committed to engaging diverse communities in the process of change. Through considered design and cultural activity they support social, civic and inter-cultural participation with the built environment.

OutPost Arts

OutPost Arts are a Langholm based arts organisation, registered as a charity. OutPost Arts offer a high quality creative education programme, creative health and well-being opportunities and supports the regeneration of Langholm & Esk Valley, benefiting people of all ages and abilities.


SURF is Scotland's Regeneration Forum. Its overall objective is to improve the wellbeing of residents in communities across Scotland. SURF's output includes research projects, seminars, conferences, international policy exchanges, study visits, an annual awards for best practice and an online policy journal.

Want to know more?

If you have any questions or comments, or would just like to find our more, you can get in contact using the email below: