At Tuesday's (19 July) Full Council meeting, councillors at Chichester District Council agreed to extend the existing annual funding arrangement for another year.

Between April 2023 and March 2024, Chichester Festival Theatre will receive further funding amounting to £187,500, while Pallant House Gallery will receive an additional £130,000.

The continued support from Chichester District Council will be beneficial to both organisations who have recently submitted their National Portfolio Organisations (NPO) Arts Council England funding applications for 2023 - 2026.

A Social and Economic Impact Assessment is also expected to be carried out by Chichester Festival Theatre, Pallant House Gallery and the Novium Museum in 2023/24, when it is hoped that customers will have returned to pre-pandemic levels. The results will help the council to review its cultural grants funding in the future.

"We are incredibly proud that Chichester is home to some of the top cultural attractions in the country," says Councillor Roy Briscoe, Cabinet Member for Community Services and Culture at Chichester District Council.

"Not only do Chichester Festival Theatre and Pallant House Gallery provide our local communities will fantastic cultural experiences, but they also attract people from across the world to visit our beautiful district. The past two years of Covid induced closures have been unprecedented and it has had a significant impact on these organisations. This is why it is important that we provide them with continued support for the year ahead.

"This funding will also mean that these organisations will have more time to deliver the incredibly popular Culture Spark 2022 programme. The season of events is inspired by the anniversaries of the leading cultural activities, which includes celebrating 60 years of Chichester Festival Theatre and 40 years of Pallant House Gallery. Thousands of people have already benefitted from the array of events and activities that have taken place, and these will continue until October this year."

Kathy Bourne, Executive Director, Chichester Festival Theatre, comments, 'We are delighted that Chichester District Council are continuing their support for CFT with funding for 2023-2024.

"After the enormous challenges of the pandemic, we are overjoyed to be welcoming back live audiences for world premiere productions, exhilarating musicals and enticing dramas; extending our work with young people, care homes and the wider community, including the wonderful Culture Spark events; and constantly working to improve our sustainability. As we celebrate 60 years at the heart of Chichester, CDC's support is more valuable than ever."

The full programme of Culture Spark events can be found on The Great Sussex Way's Culture Spark page.

Date of Release: 20 July 2022

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