The Department for Culture, Media and Sport and Arts Council England have just announced their 2023 – 2026 Investment programme which will see 990 organisations benefit from a share of £446 million per year in funding over the next three years.
This will result in 276 new organisations being funded and will ensure more people across the country have the opportunity to enjoy the incredible benefits of culture in their lives.
This includes a 95% increase in funding of, and £43.5 million specifically set aside for, designated ‘Levelling Up for Culture Places’ which have been identified as in specific need for arts investment. This seeks to build on the Government’s vision “that everyone, everywhere, deserves to benefit from public investment in culture and creativity.”
I am delighted to share that the Forest of Dean will benefit from this round of investment with Artspace Cinderford receiving £150,000 to support its excellent work.
For those not familiar with them, Artspace is a wonderful arts and education based charity who offer a wide range of courses and one off workshops for adults and children, including painting and drawing, animation, drama, singing and circus skills. They specialise in offering fully inclusive, accessible creative opportunities for people of any age or ability.
They are based at the New Mercury arts centre in Cinderford but also work extensively on an out-reach basis, at festivals, events and in schools, care homes and village venues. I have every confidence they will put this funding to good use and would encourage anyone interested in the arts to explore their offering.
There is also money in the programme to support our local libraries. Gloucestershire Libraries will receive £750,000 over the next funding period to help continue its development to provide an ambitious and forward-thinking service for everyone in the county.
Key partners involved with the project will include the University of Gloucestershire, Gloucestershire Archives, Gloucestershire NHS, Immersive Reality and many more. I am pleased there will be specific emphasis on new activity and engagement within the Forest of Dean as a priority place.
🎉 @ace_national is supporting 990 organisations across the country — the highest number ever.
Lord Parkinson visited Gloucester and some of the 275+ new organisations being funded to hear how it will help them bring high-quality arts and creativity to more people. pic.twitter.com/6NVakywk0C
— Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (@DCMS) November 11, 2022
This article was first published in The Forester newspaper.