Arts Council England has announced that they will be awarding £3.6 million to 11 organisations across the North in the latest round of their Capital: Small Grants programme.
Amongst the successful applicants are six cultural organisations from Yorkshire. Barnsley Museums have received £125,000 to transform an empty cottage at the rear of the Cooper Gallery in Barnsley into an artist studio space, with exhibition areas and a café. The investment will help to develop digital artforms throughout the studio and courtyard to encourage the development and exhibition of new innovative content.
The Hepworth Wakefield has been awarded £499,999 to transform its outdoor site into a beautiful free public garden. The garden will feature sculptures and will have its own imaginative outdoor programme which will help to introduce new audiences to the art gallery and will encourage more people to take part in the arts.
York Early Music Foundation, trading as the National Centre for Early Music, has been given £144,200 to upgrade its building facilities including works to improve disabled access to the venue and to artistic participation, as well as to make the building more energy efficient.
Three organisations in Leeds have also received funding. Opera North Limited has been awarded £499,999; Heads Together Productions Limited will receive £250,000; and East Street Arts will receive £400,000.
The Arts Council’s Capital: Small Grants programme helps to ensure organisations have the right buildings and equipment to deliver their work, helping them build resilience and become more sustainable and innovative businesses. The grants, which range between £100,000 and £499,999, allow organisations to consolidate and improve existing facilities and equipment, make energy efficiencies and develop new digital technologies.
Cllr Miller, Cabinet Spokesperson for Place said: “The Cooper Gallery is a cultural gem in the heart of Barnsley. The gallery has an outstanding collection of artwork which is owned by the Cooper Trustees and we are proud to display in the town. We are extremely grateful to the Arts Council for their continued support and the funding to transform the Cooper Cottages will have a huge impact on the Gallery. Currently unused space will become a hub of creativity and provide local artists with the opportunity to develop their portfolios.”
Sarah Maxfield, Area Director North, Arts Council England, said: “The Arts Council’s Small Capital Grants help to ensure that organisations have the right buildings and equipment so that they can continue reaching new and broader audiences, to ensure that everyone is able to access arts and culture. I am proud to see that in this round of funding we have been able to give £3.6 million to support 11 organisations from across the North to achieve their ambitions to improve how they deliver arts and culture to our communities.”