Note - In accordance with paragraph 16(j) of the Council’s Constitution, Part 4, Overview and Scrutiny Procedure Rules, the Chairman of the Council had agreed for the decision to be treated as a matter of urgency and that the call-in process should be waived. The reason for urgency was that there was an urgent need to make the funding awards.
Attention was drawn to a typographical error within the report at paragraph 3.4. The agreement value for Grizedale Arts was £47,500 and not £50,000 as stated.
Consideration was given to the continuation of grant funding support for targeted Strategic Cultural Partnership (SCP) Organisations.
The SCP funding and amount for 2021/22 proposed was for Kendal Brewery Arts Centre £65,500, Lakeland Arts £25,000, Wordsworth Trust £17,500, Grizedale Arts £12,500, Kendal Mountain Festival £10,000, Lakes Arts Festivals £10,000, Ruskin Museum £5,000, Old Laundry Theatre £5,000, Lake District Summer Music £12,050*, Ulverston Community Enterprises £9,500*, Highlights Rural Touring* £5,100, Kendal Torchlight £3,000. The funding agreement duration was for one year from April 2021 to March 2022 except for Lakeland Arts and Bowness Theatre Festival (The Old Laundry) where the commencement date was 1 April 2020 and the end date was March 2022. For 2020/21, the funding sum to Lakeland Arts was £25,000 and the Bowness Theatre Festival (The Old Laundry) was £2,000. The three organisations identified with an asterisk were designated ‘hub’ organisations and the funding amounts to those designated organisations included some council funding to smaller cultural organisations and events.
For Grizedale Arts for 2021/22 only a one off additional revenue payment of £35,000 had been agreed by the Portfolio Holder for Economy Culture and Leisure and the Operational Lead for Places and Environment that would see the start of transformation of the Farmers Arms at Lowick into a new model cultural institution reinventing a much loved local facility and developing its multifunctional role as a creative and industrious rural community hub, delivering economic and cultural reinvention in the Crake Valley. This sum would be included in the SCP funding agreement making the agreement value £47,500 for 2021/22.
(1) The levels of funding for SCP Organisations in the sums and for the grant periods set out in paragraph 3.3 and 3.4 of the report and outlined above be approved.
(2) The Director of Customer and Commercial Services, in consultation with the Legal Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist and Finance Lead Specialist, to finalise the terms of, and put in place, the necessary legal agreements with each SCP Organisation.
Reasons for Decision
To assist the delivery of the Council Plan through enabling working across boundaries in the delivery of sustainable regional growth across Morecambe Bay, promoting unique value propositions such as culture, creative and marine industries.
The funding enables the delivery of a nationally recognised cultural programme, arts, events, festivals and projects.
Alternative Options considered and rejected
To end funding support for SCP Organisations or make alternative allocations – 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.