Cultural venues share £35m in final awards from pandemic recovery fund

More than 300 organisations across the country will receive the final slice of the funding.

Cultural organisations in England have received a share of £35 million from the Culture Recovery Fund to help overcome challenges following the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) announced 340 music venues, theatres, galleries, museums and cinemas will benefit from the emergency support package.

Since August 2020, the fund has distributed £1.57 billion, providing a “lifeline” for more than 5,000 organisations struggling throughout the pandemic.

Spring weather Apr 2nd 2021
Blackpool Tower (Peter Byrne/PA)

The announcement marks the final round of awards from the Culture Recovery Fund, which helped Blackpool’s Tower Ballroom, Glastonbury Festival and the National Theatre during the national lockdown.

Arts minister Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay said: “Being cut off from them during lockdown has underlined what a vital role cultural organisations play in their community up and down the country.

“The Government stood by them in the pandemic, and is determined that they should remain open and accessible to everyone – now and for generations to come.

“I am very proud of the Culture Recovery Fund and the lifeline it has provided for cherished organisations in every part of the country.”

The final awards will safeguard heritage and regional museums, including the The Piece Hall in Halifax, the only remaining Grade I-listed Georgian cloth hall in the world, which has been granted £1.35 million to fund conservation repairs.

Queen Elizabeth II visits Halifax
The Queen unveiling a plaque at the Piece Hall in Halifax (Gareth Copley/PA)

Emergency funding will also improve access to the arts, as £70,000 was awarded to the oldest social club in Britain, Holbeck Working Men’s Club in Leeds, making sure the community-owned venue can continue with its rich cultural programme. 

Sir Nicholas Serota, chair of Arts Council England, said: “The £35 million awarded in cultural recovery funding is helping to support the sector as it continues to welcome back visitors, reinvigorate communities, champion local talent, and ensure every one of us has access to a remarkable range of high-quality cultural experiences wherever they are in the country.”

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