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The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport and Arts Council England have today announced that 35 of the country’s major arts and cultural organisations – two thirds of which are outside the capital – of are the first to receive grants between £1 and £3 million from the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund.

Today’s announcement builds on £334 million of funding which has been awarded to nearly 2,000 cultural organisations and venues of all sizes, including museums, circuses, festivals and comedy clubs across the country, to help them plan for reopening and restart performances and programmes. The certainty and security provided by these grants will help these organisations keep going and create more opportunities for freelancers. 

Millions more funding will be announced in coming weeks, on applicants who applied for over £1 million in the second round of the Grants programme, as well as recipients of the £270 million Repayable Finance programme.  

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: 

 “As part of our unprecedented £1.57 billion rescue fund, today we're saving British cultural icons with large grants of up to £3 million - from Shakespeare's Globe to the Sheffield Crucible. These places and organisations are irreplaceable parts of our heritage and what make us the cultural superpower we are.  This vital funding will secure their future and protect jobs right away."
Sarah Maxfield, Area Director North, Arts Council England said:

“The pandemic has had a massive impact on the whole range of organisations working in the North’s cultural sector - theatres, music venues, festivals, museums and the companies who support them with technical sound, light and staging services. The cultural sector makes a huge contribution to The North’s economy, quality of life and communities. Today we are announcing much needed investment and support from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund to a group of organisations across the North - with more announcements in the coming weeks - providing an essential lifeline so the cultural sector can survive and come back strongly in the future.”


The Culture Recovery Fund builds on more than £200 billion of support through the Job Retention Scheme; more than £13.5 billion through the Self Employed Income Support Scheme; and a hundred billion pounds of tax cuts, tax deferral, direct grants and government backed loans. 

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. 

Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture. We have set out our strategic vision in Let’s Create that by 2030 we want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences. We invest public money from Government and The National Lottery to help support the sector and to deliver this vision. www.artscouncil.org.uk 

Following the Covid-19 crisis, the Arts Council developed a £160 million Emergency Response Package, with nearly 90% coming from the National Lottery, for organisations and individuals needing support. We are also one of several bodies administering the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund and unprecedented support package of £1.57 billion for the culture and heritage sector. Find out more at www.artscouncil.org.uk/covid19 

Successful Applicant in Cheshire:


Amount Awarded

Exchange Events Ltd (Gandey Productions)


Total 1 organisation



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