The Playhouse is delighted to have been awarded a grant of £99,494 from Arts Council of Northern Ireland from its Stability & Renewal programme. This programme is aimed at enabling a wide range of arts and cultural organisations to survive through the pandemic into the future and was co- designed by the Department for Communities and the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.
"We are absolutely delighted to have this support from our principal funder, at a crucial time for our industry" Head of Development Max Beer said.
"We are heartbroken by what is already lost, and what we could still lose, to this crisis. The threat to livelihoods, to venues, to artists, and to the wider infrastructure of local arts, continues. And for many it is devastating. Every step to protect and support is both welcome and acutely necessary."
The Arts Collaboration Network and NI Venues Group, of which The Playhouse is a member, has welcomed the wider allocation of £11m from ACNI Stability and Renewal Fund. This funding is drawn from the £33m emergency funding for arts, heritage and culture in NI which was initially announced in July 2020 following the Government's £1.57bn investment to support the whole sector throughout the UK deal with and survive the impacts of Covid 19.
In a statement it said:
"The ACNI Stability & Renewable Fund was announced with a £7.75m budget, and received eligible bids for £24m from venues and organisations across Northern Ireland including the commercial sector.
We welcome that today's announcement sees the fund increased to £11m in recognition by Minister Hargey and DfC of the needs of the sector. The Fund, as with all other Covid programmes to date, was very significantly over subscribed which serves as an ongoing illustration of the severity of the situation faced by the Arts & Culture sector locally.
While the funding is very welcome it is equally important that the NI Executive, the Minister for Communities, Deirdre Hargey, DfC officials and stakeholders start to work immediately with the sector to plan for long term cultural renewal and the survival of our sector.
We have outlined a series of much needed actions to ensure the cultural sector survives beyond this short term funding and is in a position to truly contribute to the long term social and economy recovery of NI and its citizens.
In January we submitted Culture Beyond Covid, our paper which sets out steps to address the long term strategic needs across the cultural ecology including individual artists and creatives, organisations including venues as well as the public.
These steps require immediate attention from the NI Executive and the Minister for Communities and we urge action to avoid the permanent loss of our valued and valuable cultural sector."