'Much needed' £4.75m to boost Covid recovery for region's arts

Simon Daykin, director of the Wells Maltings.

Simon Daykin, director of the Wells Maltings, which will receive a grant from the Culture Recovery Fund. - Credit: Ian Burt

Almost £5m worth of grants are to be given out to arts, film and heritage groups across Norfolk and Waveney, the government has confirmed.

Thousands of organisations across the UK will receive cash from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport's (DCMS) Culture Recovery Fund to help them survive and recover from the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

This includes 43 groups in Norfolk and six more in Waveney, totalling £4,750,008 in grants.

In addition, Norwich Theatre Royal is one of 23 organisations across the country to receive repayable finance from the government, in the form of a £2.5m loan.

Stephen Crocker, Norwich Theatre Royal chief executive, preparing to open the theatre with all new C

Stephen Crocker, Norwich Theatre Royal chief executive. - Credit: Danielle Booden

The theatre's chief executive Stephen Crocker said: "The fantastic support we have received so far through grants and donations, alongside the actions we have taken ourselves to ensure our future, have meant that we can survive.

"This additional and different form of financial support through the Culture Recovery Fund will not only ensure we continue to survive but, as we move beyond this difficult period, will also allow us to thrive."

The cash forms the second round of of funding from the Culture Recovery Fund, adding to the £3.2m boost for the region's arts announced last October.

The biggest grant recipient in Norfolk and Waveney is the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association (RNAA), which organises the Royal Norfolk Show and is set to receive more than £500k from the government's pot.

The Royal Norfolk Show. Picture: Ian Burt

The Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association, organiser of the Royal Norfolk Show, is one of the recipients of the grants. - Credit: Ian Burt

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It will get £474,900, along with another £100k specifically for Norfolk Showground Ltd, which manages the events venue to the west of Norwich.

RNAA managing director Mark Nicholas said the funding would secure its future and culminate in the return of the Royal Norfolk Show in 2022.

He said: "The last 18 months have been extremely challenging for organisations such as ourselves and this grant will enable the RNAA and Norfolk Showground Ltd to power forward in the months ahead as we welcome visitors to Norfolk Showground.

"This funding will help us invest in the Showground site, deliver the roll-out of summer and autumn cultural programme and enhance our systems and process to improve our resilience in dealing with changes as a consequence of the pandemic."

Diss Corn Hall

Diss Corn Hall is one of the recipients of the grants. - Credit: Sonya Duncan

The grants, which total more than £300m across the UK, have been awarded through several bodies including Arts Council England, Historic England, National Lottery Heritage Fund and the British Film institute.

Among those who have also benefitted from a large sum are Norfolk's heritage railways.

The Mid Norfolk Railway Preservation Trust is set to receive £401,800, North Norfolk Railway will get £397,500 and £188k will go to Bure Valley Railway.

Several other groups will benefit from six-figure grants, such as sports centre Alive West Norfolk in King's Lynn, Norwich music venue Epic Studios and the SeaChange Trust in Great Yarmouth.

Mid Norfolk Railway steam gala at Dereham Train Station. The Union of South Africa. Picture: Ian Bur

The Mid Norfolk Railway is one of the recipients of the grants. - Credit: Ian Burt

And smaller amounts will go to the likes of Central Cinema in Fakenham and the Bressingham Steam Museum near Diss.

Meanwhile, Waveney's biggest recipient is Lowestoft's Marina Theatre, which will get a £148,961 grant.

Culture secretary Oliver Dowden said: "Our record-breaking Culture Recovery Fund has already helped thousands of culture and heritage organisations across the country survive the biggest crisis they've ever faced.

"Now we’re staying by their side as they prepare to welcome the public back through their doors – helping our cultural gems plan for reopening and thrive in the better times ahead."

Culture secretary Oliver Dowden has urged football clubs who have furloughed staff, like Norwich Cit

Culture secretary Oliver Dowden said the grants have 'helped thousands of culture and heritage organisations across the country survive the biggest crisis they've ever faced'. - Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Images

Arts Council England's south east area director Hazel Edwards added: "Thanks to the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund, we’re supporting a huge range of organisations that help make the arts and cultural scene so vibrant across our region.

"From Norwich to Felixstowe and from Cambridge to Colchester, this vital support will help theatres reopen, workshops will be delivered and communities will benefit.

"We’ve already seen how funding has helped previous recipients to survive an unprecedented year and as the sector looks to reopen this further support will help arts organisations take the next step."

The Marina Theatre in Lowestoft. Picture: Mick Howes

The Marina Theatre in Lowestoft is one of the recipients of the grants. - Credit: Mick Howes

Full list of Norfolk and Waveney organisations to benefit from Culture Recovery Fund

  • Letton Hall Trust, Breckland – £44,100
  • Mid Norfolk Railway Preservation Trust, Breckland – £401,800
  • Bure Valley Railway, Broadland – £188,000
  • Great Yarmouth Preservation Trust, Great Yarmouth – £36,800
  • St George's Theatre, Great Yarmouth – £45,890
  • The Parochial Church Council of the Ecclesiastical Parish of Great Yarmouth, Great Yarmouth – £47,100
  • The SeaChange Trust, Great Yarmouth – £180,000
  • Alive West Norfolk, King's Lynn and West Norfolk – £124,000
  • King's Lynn Festival, King's Lynn and West Norfolk – £67,348
  • Pentney Abbey Estate, King's Lynn and West Norfolk – £14,400
  • Princess Theatre, King's Lynn and West Norfolk – £60,421
  • The Majestic Cinema, King's Lynn and West Norfolk – £19,136
  • The North End Trust, King's Lynn and West Norfolk – £15,600
  • Central Cinema, North Norfolk – £18,162
  • Museum of the Broads, North Norfolk – £26,156
  • Norfolk Heritage Fleet Trust, North Norfolk – £28,400
  • North Norfolk Railway, North Norfolk – £397,500
  • Openwide Coastal, North Norfolk – £125,000
  • Sheringham Little Theatre, North Norfolk – £37,000
  • Wells Maltings Trust, North Norfolk – £47,500
  • The Restoration Trust, North Norfolk – £24,600
  • Curious Directive, Norwich – £55,052
  • Epic Studios, Norwich – £198,900
  • Figs in Wigs, Norwich – £45,350
  • Frozen Light, Norwich – £25,000
  • Galley Beggar Press, Norwich – £34,000
  • National Centre for Writing, Norwich – £85,389
  • New Heritage Solutions CIC, Norwich – £20,300
  • NORCA and Sistema, Norwich – £62,500
  • Norfolk and Norwich Festival Trust, Norwich – £77,250
  • Norfolk Museums Service, Norwich – £228,443
  • Norwich Puppet Theatre, Norwich – £42,000
  • Norwich Theatre Royal, Norwich – £2.5m (loan)
  • Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, Norwich – £305,725
  • The Cathedral of St John the Baptist Trust, Norwich – £95,700
  • The Forum Trust, Norwich – £224,005
  • The Garage Trust, Norwich – £54,974
  • The Oak Circus Centre, Norwich – £26,875
  • Voodoo Daddy's Showroom, Norwich – £120,000
  • Young Norfolk Arts Trust, Norwich – £30,000
  • Bressingham Steam Museum, South Norfolk – £43,075
  • Diss Corn Hall, South Norfolk – £25,350
  • Norfolk Showground Ltd, South Norfolk – £100,000
  • Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association, South Norfolk – £474,900
  • Beccles Public Hall, Waveney – £35,000
  • East Anglia Transport Museum, Waveney – £25,000
  • Marina Theatre Trust, Waveney – £148,961
  • Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Museum, Waveney – £11,546
  • Scenic Projects Ltd, Waveney – £125,000
  • The Excelsior Trust, Waveney – £80,800

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