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£1m investment secured for New Forest collaboration

£1m investment secured for New Forest collaboration


News release from Energise Me

A New Forest consortium, led by Energise Me, has been successful in its bid to Arts Council England for £1m.

This investment covers the first three years of an exciting place-based project called Culture in Common. Five local organisations will learn from, inspire and enable communities to enjoy, commission and create their own artistic opportunities.

Culture in Common is one of 11 brand new projects funded in the latest round of Arts Council England’s Creative People and Places programme. The funding is made possible thanks to National Lottery players.

Since 2012, Creative People and Places has focused on parts of the country where involvement in arts and culture is below the national average. Active Lives data shows that these are also places where involvement in physical activity and sport is low.

Penny Woods, Strategic Lead for Programmes at Energise Me said:

‘This is an exciting opportunity to join forces with partners from other sectors who share our passion for creating happier and healthier communities. For a long time, we’ve all been working separately within the same communities. Creative People and Places gives us the opportunity to work together to learn more about what local people want and need.’

Darren Henley, Chief Executive of Arts Council England, said:

‘These projects change villages, towns and cities for the better, helping people to lead happier, healthier lives. Our new investment means more people in more places across England will benefit from that magical spark of possibility, innovation and invention that only happens when culture and creativity becomes part of their daily lives.’

Up until 2021, there were over 7.4million people engaging with Creative People and Places projects across England. 83% were people that do not regularly engage with arts and culture.

Penny added:

‘Creative People and Places has been hugely successful in engaging more people in arts and culture. We can’t wait to see how what we learn through this programme will impact our work.’

Energise Me will be working with FolioNew Forest District CouncilNew Forest National Park Authority and The Handy Trust to create Culture in Common.



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