Coronavirus: Vision Redbridge Culture and Leisure receives almost £550,000 in lifeline grant

Vision RCL has been awarded £547,565 as part of the Governments £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund.

Vision RCL has been awarded £547,565 as part of the Governments £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund. Picture: Vision RCL - Credit: Archant

Vision RCL, Redbridge Council’s culture and leisure partner, has been awarded almost £550,000 in a grant from the government’s Culture Recovery Fund (CRF).

Vision was one of 1,385 cultural and creative organisations across the country to benefit from the £1.57billion CRF grants programme being administered by Arts Council England, which was announced last week.

The fund aims to help creative organisations face the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic and to ensure they have a sustainable future.

The £547,565 funding received by Vision is part of the £257m first round of the CRF and will go towards supporting the work of the Redbridge Drama Centre, the Kenneth More Theatre, Redbridge Music Service and Vision’s cultural events programme.

Gareth Morley, head of culture and libraries at Vision RCL said: “This successful bid to the Culture Recovery Fund is a lifeline for our much loved and valued venues and services.

“The funding will also support the fantastic array of committed freelance artists, musicians, actors and creatives we work with.

“We are exceptionally grateful for this support that helps to ensure the viability of our work in these unprecedented times.”

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Culture secretary Oliver Dowden called the funding “a vital boost for the theatres, music venues, museums and cultural organisations that form the soul of our nation.

“It will protect these special places, save jobs and help the culture sector’s recovery.

“These places and projects are cultural beacons the length and breadth of the country.”

Sir Nicholas Serota, chairman of Arts Council England, said: “Theatres, museums, galleries, dance companies and music venues bring joy to people and life to our cities, towns and villages. This life-changing funding will save thousands of cultural spaces loved by local communities and international audiences. Further funding is still to be announced and we are working hard to support our sector during these challenging times.

Following lockdown the Kenneth More Theatre, Ilford, was one of the first venues in the country to re-open.

The theatre has a full schedule this autumn leading up to this year’s panto, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which begins on December 9.

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