Agenda item

Strategic Cultural Partners Grants Investment

To consider a proposal to continue the allocation of revenue funding identified in the Council’s budget to the Council’s designated Strategic Cultural Partners.




The Economy, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder presented a report on Strategic Cultural Partners Grants Investment. He informed Members that the proposal aimed to continue the allocation of revenue funding to the Council’s designated Strategic Cultural Partners(SCP),  to maximise impact and benefit to communities and effectively deliver Council Priorities in the period leading up to the creation of the new Westmorland and Furness authority.


The report proposed to continue the funding commitment to the 12 SCP organisations for a two year period, with the total amount of funding investment per annum being at £187,150. The Economy, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder emphasised the importance of providing this level of cultural offer to residents and referred to the positive impact this could have on the mental and physical wellbeing of residents. He added that this level of support from local authorities would provide leverage to allow cultural organisations to access funding at a national level and praised the strategic approach which was felt to be imperative in allowing these organisations in planning ahead for the future.


In responding to a question regarding three of the SCP organisation which had been marked with an asterisk in the report, the Economy, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder informed Members that these three organisations acted as hub organisations supporting a number of smaller organisations across the district and assisted with the distribution of funding to them from their allocation.






(1)   a funding period of two years from 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2024 be agreed and the levels of funding for Strategic Cultural Partner (SCP) organisations to a total of £187,150 per annum in the sums and for the grant period of two years set out in paragraphs 3.3 and 3.4 of this report be approved; and


(2)   the Legal Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist in consultation with the Operational Lead Place and Environment Specialist, be authorised to finalise the terms of, and put in place, the necessary legal agreements with each SCP organisation for a period of two years from 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2024.


Reasons for Decision


Working across boundaries, delivering sustainable regional growth across Morecambe Bay, promoting unique value propositions such as cultural, creative and marine industries, delivering a balanced community and addressing the climate emergency.


Alternative Options Considered and Rejected


End funding support for SCP organisations or make alternative allocations. This is not recommended because the council has reviewed SCP investment and adopted a strategic approach to investment in culture in the district that supports the social, economic, cultural and sustainability priorities of the council and levers in significant investment levels of other funding investment for the benefit of South Lakeland. The council’s funding enables the delivery of nationally recognised cultural programmes, arts, events, festivals, and projects.


Two year agreements provide organisations with confidence in the revenue stream from the Council for a defined period and enables them to plan more effectively, whilst at the same time, the Council would be assured that value for money was being provided through monitoring of the agreements and SCP relationship management.


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