Tea and Tolerance was  founded by artists Jason Hird, Lucy Meredith and Zoe Parker in September 2014 in response to the York Mosque that invited the English Defence League inside their mosque to drink tea. Our aim is to get people talking, thinking and doing imaginative things with each other.

Through this work, we are  creating a vision towards the shaping of a more humane and viable society.

Through co-curation and co-production, we create things and talk with people about how they feel about themselves, their culture and their surroundings. Ultimately, we want to evolve the kind of world we would love to live in and leave for future generations of humans ( and other species).

Tea and Tolerance – the initial activity we created was a roaming tea trolley with various receptacles that represent an eclectic and diverse environment. People become curious and approach us, then are invited by two hosts to pick a pot and then inside are small scrolls containing questions. from here, we talk…

Nothing is compulsory and everything recommended.

DrawingACollaboration – combines the trolley conversational structure with drawing. In this participatory installation, a visual artist turns ideas  into simple drawings with headlines. Participants can also add their own headlines and drawings. Through the collation of these ideas and pictures together, we start to get a sense of the collective voice in a space.

Being Human – a Conversation Game – funded by Arts Council England , we have spent the past 2 years developing, refining and exploring a game format for having conversations. The game uses a tea towel as its board with 5 sets of cards – WELCOME, YOU, US, WILD, QUOTES all contained within a tea caddy.  The board game will be available ( first edition) in early 2019.

Training and beyond – we offer a short training in our methods and how these apply to communication. Through our continued enquiry we have identified a set of Play Nicely guidelines, which are a kind of guide on how to speak with other people.


Using these models we have worked in many communities across leeds, developing  versions of the game that reflect the needs and environments of  each community.