Wednesday, September 6, 2017

News: SCR calls for ideas for £15m cultural fund

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Creative and innovative projects that can tap into a new Government fund are being sought in the Sheffield city region (SCR).

Last month saw the launch of the Northern Cultural Regeneration Fund and the SCR's local enterprise partnership (LEP) is searching for projects having been asked by the Government to co-ordinate proposals locally.

The £15m is to help build a lasting regional legacy from the Great Exhibition of the North next year. The fund will make grants of up to £4m for major cultural and tech projects to be included in the exhibition, helping pave the way for future investment in the Northern Powerhouse.

The Great Exhibition, in Newcastle from next June to September, is set to be the biggest event in England in 2018. It will showcase world-class art, culture, design and innovation from the North.

It will demonstrate to the world how the North of England's great art and culture, design and innovation has shaped our lives and is building the economy of tomorrow.

Projects could include opening a new tech start-up centre or renovating live music venues and should increase opportunities for people to experience, benefit and contribute to culture and creativity.

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Sir Nigel Knowles, chair of the SCR LEP, said: "This fund can make a huge contribution to the cultural and creative offer of the city region.

"We're a region blessed with outstanding creative and cultural talent and are quite rightly recognised for the contribution this sector makes to the economy and our communities.

"But we're also a city region that doesn't have some of the iconic physical cultural and creative assets that other parts of the country boast – which means the talent and the opportunity that abounds here don't always play as central a role as they could do.

"This fund can help us develop some of those assets. We're entirely open to ideas from across the city region – and the LEP Board looks forward to considering the proposals that come forward."

The latest Rotherham town centre masterplan includes the potential development of an arts centre and theatre on the soon-to-be cleared site of the Law Courts. It could incorporate cafe / restaurant and creative / business space and a 500 seat theatre and studio theatre. The Council is being called upon to investigate feasibility and funding.

SCR LEP website

Images: RMBC / WYG


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