More than £76m from Culture Recovery Fund given to arts organisations

The Military Wives Choir, Kneehigh Theatre in Cornwall and Birmingham’s Moseley Folk And Arts Festival will all receive funding.

Members of the Military Wives Choir
Members of the Military Wives Choir

More than £76 million has been handed to arts organisations in the latest tranche of Government support for the cultural sector.

Comedy clubs, circuses, music festivals, theatres and museums are all in line to receive the funding as part of the £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund.

A total of 588 organisations will share the latest round of grants of up to £1 million.

Coronavirus – Mon Oct 12, 2020
Oliver Dowden (Kirsty O’Connor/PA)

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “This is more vital funding to protect cultural gems across the country, save jobs and prepare the arts to bounce back.

“Through Arts Council England we are delivering the biggest ever investment in the arts in record time.

“Hundreds of millions of pounds are already making their way to thousands of organisations.

“These awards build on our commitment to be here for culture in every part of the country.”

The Military Wives Choir has been awarded £92,057, Kneehigh Theatre in Cornwall will receive £249,833 and Birmingham’s Moseley Folk And Arts Festival will get £50,000.

Hilary Davan Wetton, artistic director of the Military Wives Choirs, said: “I am delighted that the unique and far-reaching contribution that choral singing makes to the lives of our military families has been recognised by the Government’s Cultural Recovery Fund.

“It will enable Military Wives Choirs to maintain their ambition through the many obstacles of the current situation; in these grim times this award shines out like a beacon in a dark night.”

Zippos Circus will receive £628,986 to continue with coronavirus-secure performances across the country.

Tate Modern sponsor deal
Sir Nicholas Serota (Yui Mok/PA)

British actor Robson Green, who is a patron of The Vindolanda Trust which has been awarded £250,000 to enable it to open its Hadrian’s Wall sites, said: “This money will not only secure financial viability, covering the core costs over the long and uncertain winter but will also enable them to get more robust systems in place for 2021.

“Having just recently completed a TV series telling the incredible story of Hadrian’s Wall the experience reminded me that History makes us what we are and gives us a wider awareness of the issues that faced, are facing, and will face the world we are growing up in.”

Also on the list of second round grants is Somerset House, which will receive £850,000, while comedy venue The Comedy Store will receive £964,252.

Founder and CEO Don Ward said: “Over 41 years have passed since I opened the very first alternative comedy venue in London, after 20 years I added a second venue in Manchester.

“Comedy is now rightly recognised as an art form and I am so proud to be known as the Godfather. I was devastated… when we had to close both venues due to the coronavirus and all the relative problems it brought to the understandably enforced closure.

“The investment will ensure that we will be back to entertain live audiences as soon as it is safe to do so, protecting livelihoods and the artform of comedy itself.”

Arts Council England chairman Sir Nicholas Serota said: “Culture is an essential part of life across the country, helping to support people’s wellbeing through creativity and self-expression, bringing communities together, and fuelling our world class creative industries.

“This latest set of awards from the Culture Recovery Fund builds on those announced recently and will help hundreds of organisations to survive the next few months, ensuring that the cultural sector can bounce back after the crisis.

“We will continue doing everything we can to support artists and cultural and creative organisations, with further funding to be announced in the coming weeks.”

The latest round of funding follows the £257 million which was allocated on Monday.

Earlier this week Mr Dowden admitted that an advert featured in the Government’s Cyber First campaign was “crass”.

The advert featured a young dancer tying up her ballet shoes alongside the caption: “Fatima’s next job could be in cyber. (she just doesn’t know it yet).”

It adds the slogan: “Rethink. Reskill. Reboot.”

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