£2.1M FOR THE ARTS IN NORTHERN IRELAND
The Arts Council of Northern Ireland has awarded over £2.1 million through its National Lottery Fund to arts organisations across Northern Ireland.
Eighty-five arts organisations have benefited from Arts Council of Northern Ireland National Lottery Fund awards totaling £2,122,738. The awards were delivered through four Lottery programmes targeting Access to the Arts, New Work, Equipment and Musical Instruments, as well as through Special Initiatives aimed at architecture and crafts.
The disbursement addresses a broad cultural and social remit, ranging from £32,250 to the Ulster Scots Dance Alliance to increase access to Highland dance, £120,000 to the Ashton Community Trust in New Lodge to develop artistic opportunities for young people over a three-year period, and £26,550 to Portadown 2000 for a series of exhibitions by leading Irish artists at Portadown’s Millennium Court Arts Centre.
The spread of awards encompasses all counties of Northern Ireland. Rathlin Island Co-operative Society receives £40,000 to continue a programme of arts and cultural projects designed to re-invigorate Rathlin Island, plus a further £27,500 to develop a crafts base. Sticky Fingers based in the Newry area receives £5,755 to produce a new child-focused touring theatre production. £44,000 goes to Border Arts in Strabane to engage rural communities in carnival arts, and the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust in Ards gets £7,100 to commission and film a new music composition. Greater Shantallow Community Association in Derry City receives £90,000 towards its community arts programme, and the Mandarin Speakers Association in Antrim gets £39,963 to raise awareness of Chinese culture through Chinese traditional and contemporary arts.
The first awards made through the new Architecture Special Initiatives go towards the publication of a long-awaited book on modern architecture in Ulster by the Ulster Architectural Heritage Society (£40,000), and two projects led by the University of Ulster, involving a built environment multi-media schools’ resource and students’ presentations on site hoardings surrounding the Belfast Campus redevelopment (£10,000), and a series of workshops and exhibitions in Belfast bringing together community-based organisations and design professionals on a theme of citizen-led urban regeneration (£39,100).
Roisín McDonough, Arts Council Chief Executive, said of the awards: “The principal aim of our Lottery fund is to make a real and lasting difference through the arts to people’s lives right across Northern Ireland. The awards enable arts organisations to achieve exceptional standards of arts provision to all sections of our society.”