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Creative Basildon receives £850k Arts Council fundin

3rd December 2021
Posted by Johnny Jenkins

Success for Basildon: a creative future shines as key arts programme Creative Basildon receives a further £850k funding from Arts Council England to take its work from April 22 to March 25 and become part of its National Portfolio

Arts Council England are investing £38.3 million in 39 Creative People and Places programmes as part of their Creative People and Places national portfolio 2022-25. All successful applicants will receive funding between £750k to £1 million over the three year period. The £38.3 million is made up of £25.3 million in new money and £13 million funding previously awarded, to cover part of this period. 

The Creative Basildon programme brings high quality arts and cultural activity to your doorstep, with loads of opportunity to get involved as participants and audiences

The programme saw some great successes over lockdown with Open Labs taking over empty shops and Our Towns bringing street art to town centre walls

And will be travelling across the borough bringing activity to more residents in their own places working in communities near you

Cllr. Andrew Baggott, Leader of Basildon Borough Council said:

“Many congratulations to the partnership of the BasildON creative people and places programme. This additional funding will provide even more opportunities for local people to commission, create and participate in cultural activity. The latest artwork in the town centre, and the fantastic series of events that ran over the summer were great examples of what can happen when communities come together. I look forward to getting involved with the next programme of events.”

Creative Basildon, first funded in 2019, is part of a portfolio of 39 ‘Creative People and Places’ projects across England, funded through the National Portfolio as a long term approach to investing and developing further arts and cultural activity in a range of places which historically have had limited opportunities and funding. Arts Council aim to support ambitious and diverse cultural activity to help shape the places where they work.

New on the ground Programme Director Ruth Heritage says

‘I am so pleased for Basildon and our residents that this brilliant programme has been extended into 2025 and beyond, and it showcases the hard work and vision that our board and communities share for the future of Basildon. The team and I are bringing wide experience, energy, and ambition to build on lockdown successes, to enable more residents to experience and participate in more arts and cultural activity more often through embedding arts into communities, and to place Basildon lives and stories at the centre of our programme.’

‘I am privileged to be working with communities, partners, and residents on a series of exciting projects and commissions which will draw from a range of arts practices from contemporary performance in live art and music to literature and storytelling to dance and all spaces in between, provide opportunities for local artists and creatives to work alongside communities and industry, and bring new live, digital, and physical arts experiences to residents and visitors alike.’

The programme is led by a board of Basildon partners and community representatives including Things Made Public CIC, Basildon County Council, Essex County Council Libraries, Placemaking organisation FutureCity, Eastgate Shopping Centre, TIME Music Charity, and Chaired by Hephzi Angela from GH Scientific / Basildon Street Science. 

Things Made Public, the lead organisation for the programme commented: “We are delighted that Creative BasildON is seen as a flagship project and has been welcomed into the Creative People & Places National Portfolio. 

Creative BasildON is committed to ensuring that local people are leading and shaping a long term cultural vision for Basildon. We’re delighted to be working with Ruth and look forward to continuing to support the team as the programme grows and evolves over the next 4 years.”

Programme Manager Sammy Oxford, who oversaw delivery of the Our Towns and Open Labs projects in 2021, said

‘This last year saw us work alongside community groups including Peaceful Place and Women Together in Basildon, and we aim to build on this to work deeper in community collaboration. We are developing our community voices activity, where residents can learn about and become involved in shaping and creating our cultural programme. We’ll be providing new paid creative opportunities for young people and also for people wanting to gain skills through volunteering. We welcome you talking to us about our plans and will soon be announcing more and new ways you can be involved as residents, community groups, partners, and of course creatives. We can’t wait for you to come on this journey with us.’

Please see Creative Basildon’s socials & website for more information & announcements, and to sign up for our newsletter 

@creativebasild1 – twitter @creativebasildon – insta & facebook