Hundreds of arts organisations to receive share of £257m in emergency funds

Almost 1,400 arts and cultural organisations will receive a share of £257m in emergency grants from the government to help them weather the coronavirus crisis.

The funding will go to 1,385 theatres, galleries, performance groups, arts organisations, museums and local venues as part of the government's £1.6bn Culture Recovery Fund.

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

Organisations that applied for grants of less than £1m in the first round of the fund were informed yesterday of their awards by Arts Council England, which is distributing the money on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

The announcement brings the total amount of grant funding awarded to the arts and culture sector so far to more than £360m, with further funding for organisations due to be announced in the coming weeks.

Venues receiving the financial boost include the London Symphony Orchestra, the Bristol Old Vic Theatre and Liverpool’s Cavern Club. 

Funds will also go to the Beamish Living Museum in County Durham and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park in Wakefield.

Sir Nicholas Serota, chair of Arts Council England, said the funding would help sustain hundreds of cultural spaces and organisations that were loved and admired by local communities and international audiences. 

“Further funding will be announced later in the month,” he said.

Oliver Dowden, the culture secretary, said: “The government is here for culture and we have worked around the clock to get this record investment out to the frontline.”

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