As we launch new funds, our new Chief Executive calls on government to back culture while promising a funding shift outside of London
See more at: www.artscouncil.org.uk/news
Darren Henley has made his first public speech as our Chief Executive in Hull, as part of a day of events celebrating Hull as City of Culture 2017
Highlights from the speech
Darren announced “significant shift” in the distribution of Arts Council National Lottery funding: so that by the end of 2018 at least 75% of Lottery revenue will be invested outside of London. This builds on previous measures in a move to increase artistic production, ambition and growth outside of London.
A call to government that no further cuts are made to arts funding: to allow arts and culture to provide opportunity to individuals and communities everywhere: educationally, socially and economically.
Darren talked about his first six weeks at the Arts Council: having visited over 60 places and meeting more than 250 arts and cultural leaders, seeing first-hand “how the arts in England make up an extraordinary, interconnected creative ecology” reinforcing his “absolute commitment to public investment in the arts, in museums and in libraries”.
A commitment to developing creative talent across our country: “It’s ambitious. It will require us to build lots of bridges – and to blow up lots of barriers… Cultural Education should be a right, not a privilege [as] creative talent is everywhere. But opportunity is not.”
The speech ended on a promise to support diversity, artistic ambition and excellence and reach as the best possible argument for public funding for the arts: “I want the arts to speak to more people, but I want our voices to continue to be distinct, as they have always been. To be voices of ambition, daring and innovation, that challenge preconceptions, that think differently and freely and create great art in ways that have never been done before – art that changes people’s lives.”