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Arts Council chairman will visit Bradford
9:00am Sunday 15th December 2013 in News
The chairman of Arts Council England is to visit Bradford next year, amid accusations it is not giving enough funding to the district.
Over the last year, the organisation distributed more than £320 million of taxpayers’ money for arts projects.
But an independent report claimed this was not being distributed fairly, estimating that Arts Council England allocated £20 per head of population in London, compared to only £3.60 per head of population in the rest of England.
The report prompted arts groups to meet in Bradford to discuss the problem and debate how better levels of arts investment could be secured.
One of those in attendance was Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, executive member for culture at Bradford Council. She had already invited Sir Peter Bazalgette, chairman of Arts Council England, to Bradford to see the cultural projects happening locally.
Coun Hinchcliffe said when Sir Peter visits in March, she planned to show him not just established cultural attractions, but also the emerging groups and projects which she believes would bring huge benefits to the district if they were given investment.
Coun Hinchcliffe said: “I'm sure he’ll be impressed with the calibre of the established cultural organisations we’ve got here as well as the potential for growth from newer groups.
“With 23 per cent of our population under the age of 16, we have a young, dynamic city and this is exactly the kind of city which would be able to create a huge return from even small amounts of investment.”
Sir Peter said: “I will be very interested to see the redevelopment of the city centre, including the Impressions gallery and the new library.
“I’m also looking forward to visiting the National Media Museum and to meeting colleagues from our national portfolio organisations in Bradford, such as Mind the Gap and Kala Sangam, as well as the city’s civic leaders and arts and culture team and hearing about their aspirations and telling them more about the Arts Council’s commitment to the region.”
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