Sutton Coldfield Town Hall receives lifeline Cultural Recovery Grant

Sutton Coldfield Town Hall receives lifeline grant from Government’s £1.57bn Culture Recovery Fund

12 October 2020 PRESS RELEASE

Royal Sutton Coldfield Community Town Hall Trust has been awarded £100,000 as part of the Government’s £1.57billion Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) to help face the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic and to ensure they have a sustainable future, the Culture Secretary has announced today.

The Town Hall is one of 1.385 cultural and creative organisations across the country receiving urgently needed support. £257 million of investment has been announced today as part of the very first round of the Culture Recovery Fund grants programme being administered by Arts Council England. Further rounds of funding in the cultural and heritage sector are due to be announced over the coming weeks.

The Trust, which took over the town hall as an arts charity in 2016 when it was in danger of being closed, had made huge steps to broaden the cultural programme of the venue, which ranges from locally produced musicals to public speaking, pantomimes and live bands to stand up comedy. As a ballroom and event space, activities range from weddings and meetings to ballroom tea dances and northern soul. The funding will allow it to continue to stay partially open to host food bank collections, dance school lessons and blood service collections, whilst preparing for streamed ‘hybrid’ meetings and weddings and reduced capacity cabaret shows from November. Shows for 2021 include comedian Bill Bailey, talks from broadcaster Jeremy Vine and MP Jess Phillips, The Ladyboys of Bangkok and 2021’s Christmas Pantomime ‘Cinderella’.

Rt Hon Andrew Mitchell, President of the Trust and the Royal Town’s MP said:
“This is wonderful news for our hard working and highly effective team running our Town Hall. We are grateful to the Government for listening and acting in our interest and will use this support to ensure the Town Hall continues its central role in our Royal Town’s life “

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said:
“This funding is a vital boost for the theatres, music venues, museums and cultural organisations that form the soul of our nation. It will protect these special places, save jobs and help the culture sector’s recovery. “These places and projects are cultural beacons the length and breadth of the country. This unprecedented investment in the arts is proof this government is here for culture, with further support to come in the days and weeks ahead so that the culture sector can bounce back strongly.”

Chair, Arts Council England, Sir Nicholas Serota, said:
“Theatres, museums, galleries, dance companies and music venues bring joy to people and life to our cities, towns and villages. This life-changing funding will save thousands of cultural spaces loved by local communities and international audiences. Further funding is still to be announced and we are working hard to support our sector during these challenging times.”

Sutton Coldfield Town Hall’s Managing Director Julie Rennison said, “Lockdown has been devastating for venues, and our future has been so uncertain. We can move forward more confidently with plans to relaunch our safe, streamed meetings and small weddings, with the possibility of some reduced capacity Christmas Cabaret shows. We have already started speaking to other local arts organisations to see how we can work together as a town and gradually return safe entertainment to Sutton Coldfield.”

#HereForCulture @DCMS @hmtreasury @ace_national @dcmsgovuk; @ukhmtreasury; @aceagrams

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