£257 million to help save 1385 theatres, arts venues, museums and cultural organisations across England

More than 1,300 arts and cultural organisations will receive a share of £257 million as part of a vital financial boost from the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund, as announced by Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden on 12 October 2020.

Organisations that applied for grants under £1 million in the first round of the Culture Recovery Fund were informed of their awards on 12 October 2020 by Arts Council England which is distributing funding on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

The allocation is the biggest tranche of funding distributed to date from the Culture Recovery Fund, bringing the total amount of grant funding awarded so far to more than £360 million. Further funding for organisations is due to be announced in the coming days and weeks.

This round of funding will help 1,385 theatres, galleries, performance groups, arts organisations, museums and local venues survive the challenges of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

It will help allow performances to restart, venues to plan for reopening and help protect jobs and create opportunities for freelancers.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: "The government is here for culture and we have worked around the clock to get this record investment out to the frontline."

"It will allow our wonderful theatres, museums, music venues and cultural organisations to survive this crisis and start putting on performances again - protecting jobs and creating new work for freelancers.

This is just the start - with hundreds of millions pounds more on the way for cultural organisations of all sizes that still need our help.

Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair, Arts Council England, said: "Theatres, museums, galleries, dance companies and music venues bring joy to people and life to our cities, towns and villages. This is a difficult time for us all, but this first round of funding from the Culture Recovery Fund will help sustain hundreds of cultural spaces and organisations that are loved and admired by local communities and international audiences. Further funding will be announced later in the month and we are working hard to support creative organisations and individuals during these challenging times.

A number of organisations that will receive funding includes:Beamish, the Living Museum of the North, Co Durham - receiving £970,000 to support the business through the winter and restart a capital project.

  • Backyard Comedy Club, Tower Hamlets, London - receiving £200,000 makes it possible for grassroots showcases, touring bands and comedy nights attracting some of the best comics on the circuit to be restarted at the largest purpose-built comedy club in London.
  • Birmingham Royal Ballet - received £500,000 to help off-set loss of earnings from performances and touring. The Birmingham Royal Ballet has performances planned at Birmingham Repertory Theatre and Sadler’s Wells in London at the end of October
  • Bristol Old Vic Theatre - receiving £610,466 to help transform its business model including a mix of live and online performances as well as support for its creative workforce.
  • The Brudenell, Leeds - receiving £220,429 to host a free weekly event as well as stream events working with partners such as Music:Leeds and Made With Music.
  • Cavern Club, Liverpool - receiving £525,000 that will fund the recording of local musicians’ live performances which will be streamed digitally to provide opportunities for local artists and technicians.
  • Corey Baker Dance, Birmingham - receiving £124,836 will help Corey Baker Dance to deliver new digital dance projects.
  • Curve, Leicester - reciving £950,000 to help with plans to re-open the theatre. This large producing theatre has often transferred work to the West End.
  • Deafinitely Theatre, London - receiving £95,830 will fund a broad, bold cultural programme of events that will provide a key access point to the isolated deaf community and a youth theatre service that will provide London’s only fully accessible arts provision for deaf young people.
  • Exeter Northcott Theatre, Exeter - receiving £183,399 to help them develop a new business model to sustain the business
  • Finborough Theatre - receiving £59,574 to secure their iconic location and maintain in-house skills to be able to reopen successfully and sustainably in the future
  • The Georgian Theatre Royal, Richmond - receiving £52,960 will help the theatre to provide tours of the building and restart its youth theatre virtually.
  • Gifford’s Circus, Stroud - receiving £240,000 will enable Gifford Circus to continue to trade to the opening of their 2021 season in April next year.
  • Grimm & Co, Rotherham, Yorkshire - reeciving £86,000 will help them survive in order to provide support for children with creativity and writing. This literacy charity supports children aged 7 to 18 to improve their confidence and skills around creativity and writing.
  • Hackney Empire, London - receiving £585,064 to help support a new model of responsive programming and address increased costs driven by the pandemic.
  • Hallé Concerts Society, Manchester - receiving £740,000 will support the organisation to live stream fortnightly concerts from the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester.
  • Heugh Battery Museum, Hartlepool - receiving £71,573 will fund vital conservation work on the collection at the UK’s only open air museum dedicated to the First World War.
  • John Peel Centre for Creative Arts, Stowmarket - receiving £84,335 will allow the community-owned Centre to make necessary adjustments to enable it to reopen safely and restart a variety of music performances featuring established acts and emerging talent, as well as poetry, film, theatre, and comedy.
  • Lighthouse, Poole - receiving £987,964 to help this multi-artform venue and home to Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra remain sustainable with a phased programme of reopening and to ensure the orchestra’s work to connect with the local community can continue.
  • London Symphony Orchestra - receiving £846,000 to help them begin a phased return to full-scale performance
  • National Maritime Museum Cornwall, Falmouth - receiving £485,000 to sustain the future of the museum that promotes Cornwall’s maritime heritage
  • Royal Academy of Dance - receiving £606,366 to enable students and teachers to get back to rehearsals and restart opportunities for local people of all ages and abilities to get involved with dance
  • Royal Liverpool Philharmonic - receiving £748,000 will enable the orchestra to provide a short, socially distanced programme, all of which will be recorded to stream at a later date.
  • Rutland County Council Museums, Oakham - receiving £132,100 will support Rutland County Museum and Oakham Castle, two significant heritage sites in Rutland, to gradually re-open and work towards a full relaunch in April 2021.
  • Storyhouse, Chester, Cheshire - receiving £730,252 to help open the building safely and put performances on. Storyhouse is a library, theatre, cinema, community hub, cultural centre and restaurant.
  • Theatre by the Lake, Keswick, Lake District - receiving £878,492 to support the theatre - one of the biggest employers in the area - to help cover losses as a result of coronavirus.
  • Theatre Peckham, London - £150,000 to help deliver covid secure classes for its pipeline of young talent and provide support for freelance artists.
  • Theatre Royal Stratford East, London - receiving £495,625 will help the theatre to continue to adapt their work including digital offerings and live work that supports local young people, schools and community groups.
  • Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne - receiving £140,500 will enable the gallery to fully restart activities and an expanded creative programme.
  • Wigmore Hall, London - receiving £1 million to sustain the future of this international centre for chamber music and song.
  • Wiltshire Creative (runs Salisbury Playhouse, Salisbury Festival and Salisbury Arts Centre) - receiving £446,968 will help this pan-arts organisation deliver their fantastic outreach and community programmes and develop local creative talent in the area.
  • Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield - recieving £804,013 to help the park to adapt its buildings to new regulations and help it continue to reopen safely.
  • Young Vic, London - receiving £961,455 to help it partially open between October and March, remotely operating its Directors Programme and its outreach activities with local communities.

The announcement will be followed by further allocations of grants and loans to successful applicants to the government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund in the coming days and weeks.

Neil Mendoza, Government Commissioner for Culture Recovery and Renewal said: "We are at a serious moment for the economy and jobs, but especially for the cultural sector. Culture provides a life-enhancing force. It contributes to our national good in so many ways, from well-being to economic growth, in every single part of the country. Today’s funding announcement for performing arts and museums is the biggest tranche yet released from the Culture Recovery Fund. Arts Council England have worked hard to judge applications carefully ensuring that the Fund can release grants quickly while protecting taxpayers money. We are here for culture."

The £1.57 billion Cultural Recovery Fund builds on unprecedented support from the government and our arms length bodies for the culture sectors. This includes the Job Retention Scheme; a years’ business rates holiday for leisure businesses and the Bounce Back Loans scheme.

This is in addition to £104 million of emergency funding already distributed by Arts Council England to organisations and individuals, and £96 million currently available to support the arts and freelancers, through programmes like National Lottery Project Grants and Developing Your Creative Practice.

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