Nottinghamshire venues react to “lifeline” Culture Recovery Fund boost

More than £300 million has been awarded to thousands of cultural organisations across the country in the latest round of support from the Culture Recovery Fund, including a number of Nottingham and Nottinghamshire cultural venues, attractions and organisations. Many of these venues have been closed since March 2020, and the funding will help them to recover and reopen in the months ahead.

A total of 150 East Midlands venues and organisations have been awarded over £14.7m in funding. Nottingham and Nottinghamshire recipients include the Theatre Royal & Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham Playhouse, Broadway Cinema, the National Ice Centre and Motorpoint Arena, Creswell Heritage Trust (which operates Creswell Crags), Nottingham City of Literature, the National Justice Museum, Nottingham Contemporary and Peggy’s Skylight amongst others.

Sandeep Mahal, Director of Nottingham City of Literature said:

“This is fantastic news and a much needed lifeline. It has been a tough year for everyone, but lights are starting to appear at the end of tunnels. We are exceptionally grateful for the Cultural Recovery grant funding we have received from DCMS. This grant enables us not just to survive, but to face the coming challenges from a position of strength, working harder than ever with the communities we serve, building a better world with words.

Stephanie Sirr, Chief Executive at Nottingham Playhouse, said:

“We are very grateful to have received £319,238 from Arts Council England to reopen. We have already made plans to keep producing new work and hire local and national creative artists through our Spring Loaded season of live and digital events. We also cannot wait to welcome audiences back to the theatre for Adam Penford’s long-awaited Piaf in July. Nottingham Playhouse earns over 70% of its income in normal times and this has been the most difficult 12 months in our 70 year history. However, it is now an exciting and promising time and we thank ACE as well as the kind generosity of audiences, donors, funders and sponsors for saving us.”

Portfolio Holder for Leisure, Culture & IT at Nottingham City Council, Councillor Dave Trimble, said:

“After so many months of uncertainty, and a couple of false dawns along the way, there is now a real sense of light at the end of the tunnel.  This award will help us enormously, to look ahead to the spring and summer with confidence and to plan for our reopening and recovery.”

Martin Ingham, Chief Executive, National Ice Centre and Motorpoint Arena Nottingham said:

“On behalf of everyone at the National Ice Centre & Motorpoint Arena Nottingham, I would like to express our sincere gratitude to Arts Council England and the DCMS for their grant award from the Culture Recovery Fund. Our wonderful team of staff are longing to apply their skills, experience, creativity and sheer hard work to delivering the activity levels we enjoyed before the lights were switched off on March 17 2020.

We have truly missed the one million visitors who would have come through our doors in the past year to partake in their passions for live music, entertainment and sport. The CRF grant funding allows us to re-open our venue steadily and safely over the coming months and hopefully later this year we will once again be swept along with happy, cheering and singing crowds, immersed in the unique atmosphere of shared live entertainment.

As the venue returns gradually to full capacity we look forward to once again being a major cultural attraction for the East Midlands and helping the region to recover economically through job creation and £40m of economic impact per annum.”

Steve Mapp, CEO of Broadway said:

“After this enforced and extended intermission, we are looking forward to the curtains going up again at Broadway in May. Receipt of this funding, alongside the continued support from our audience and staff, will be essential to making that possible. We can’t wait to see everyone back in our building again, watching films from across the world and enjoying the atmosphere in our terrace and newly refurbished café bars.”

Shona Powell OBE, Director, Lakeside Arts said:

“We’re hugely grateful for this funding which helps Lakeside in three ways.  It enables us to continue to support regional artists with digital capture and dissemination; it underpins delivery of our new business plan; and it welcomes audiences and visitors back to live events, exhibitions and to make great use of our beautiful parkland this summer.”

Executive Director of Creswell Heritage Trust, Paul Baker said:

“The lockdown has provided us with the opportunity to reflect upon how we can better serve our visitors and online audiences and this funding will not only enable us to survive but will also provide us with the time to make improvements, be more strategic, and offer an experience that has a real impact with our audiences. We are looking forward to lots of repeat and first-time visitors this summer. We are immensely grateful to everyone who has supported us throughout the pandemic, from the large funders such as the DCMS to every one our friends and supporters who has donated to our campaign. We can’t wait to see Creswell Crags come back to life with happy visitors, and to share more stories of our Ice Age past.”

Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, said:

“Our record breaking Culture Recovery Fund has already helped thousands of culture and heritage organisations across the country survive the biggest crisis they’ve ever faced.

Now we’re staying by their side as they prepare to welcome the public back through their doors – helping our cultural gems plan for reopening and thrive in the better times ahead.”

Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair, Arts Council England, said:

“Investing in a thriving cultural sector at the heart of communities is a vital part of helping the whole country to recover from the pandemic. These grants will help to re-open theatres, concert halls, and museums and will give artists and companies the opportunity to begin making new work.

We are grateful to the Government for this support and for recognising the paramount importance of culture to our sense of belonging and identity as individuals and as a society.”

Posted on 06 April 2021

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Sophie Milne

A member of the Marketing and Communications team at Marketing NG, Sophie manages press and PR. This includes writing and distributing press releases, arranging FAM trips, liaising with the media to gain press coverage for Nottingham/shire and Marketing NG, monitoring the news and ensuring colleagues are kept up to date with news stories and doing media interviews.