Northern theatres and museums share in £9m emergency funding

Royal Exchange Theatre

Northern arts organisations have received £9m from the Arts Council’s emergency funds to help them stay afloat for the next three months.

Fifty three Northern organisations will benefit from the money, which is part of £33m allocated to English organisations desperate for short-term funding.

The groups are all National Portfolio Organisations, designated by Arts Council England as leaders in their areas.

The Lowry Centre will receive £1.29m and Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre, which has announced plans to cut 65% of its permanent workforce, will receive £571,000.

Sheffield Theatres Trust, which runs the Crucible, Studio and Lyceum, will get £676,000 and the trust running Leeds Playhouse has been allocated £669,000.

Arts Council England chief executive Darren Henley said: “This investment, made possible thanks to National Lottery players, provides critical relief to valued cultural organisations that faced immediate financial disaster before September.

“We know that massive challenges remain in the Autumn, and we’ll use the rest of our available funds, alongside the Government funding just announced, to support our sector in the coming months.”

The funding has sought to help cultural organisations from across the spectrum that are in urgent need of cash.

Liverpool creative hub The Bluecoat, the People’s History Museum in Manchester, outdoor arts group Walk the Plank and publishing house Comma Press are among some of the other recipients supported in this wave of funding.

The money is from the Arts Council’s £160m Emergency Response Package which has already helped to support 10,000 individuals and independent organisations.

The remaining budget from this emergency programme will be used to complement the Government’s £1.57bn rescue package that was announced on Monday.

The Royal Exchange Theatre welcomed the support, and tweeted: “Huge thanks to @ace_national [Arts Council England] for the welcome news that we are a recipient of their Emergency Response Fund. This will support our financial viability through the summer to the end of September.”