At its meeting today, Liverpool City Region Combined Authority adopted a Culture and Creativity Strategy setting out the city region’s approach to boosting cultural activities and creativity over the next 30 years.
Developed following extensive consultation across the city region’s six boroughs, the Strategy outlines three key aims:
- Expanding and promoting the existing cultural and creative offer as a core part of a growing visitor economy alongside more targeted creative social intervention.
- Developing a supply chain for talent and harnessing the region’s strengths as a ‘pool of talent’ with pathways into the creative sectors.
- Sustaining and enhancing economic growth through culture and creativity; recognising and investing in culture and creativity as major drivers in the visitor economy and creative industries, and as catalysts to achieve positive outcomes in wellbeing, health, education, cohesion and the future world of work.
Building on the Combined Authority’s previous investment in culture, including £5 million from the Single Investment Fund to support cultural events in 2017 and 2018, the Combined Authority also approved an annual budget of £300,000 from the Mayoral Priority Budget, to support a range of events.
Under the 1% for Culture initiative, the Combined Authority will become the first in the UK to commit the equivalent of at least 1% of its annual £30 million devolution funding from government, £300,000 per year, to support cultural activities.
These activities will include:
- £200k to support a Borough of Culture programme
- £30k allocated for the Liverpool City Region Cultural Awards. Additional funding will be acquired for the awards through developing sponsorship opportunities.
- £70k allocated for the development and delivery of region wide events (themed to celebrate and highlight the city region)
Speaking about the strategy, Metro Mayor for the Liverpool City Region, said:
“In my manifesto I talked about the value of culture to the success of the Liverpool City Region. I believe that culture and creativity are integral to our international profile and brand and integral to achieving the vision for a prosperous, fair and desirable place to live, work and invest.
“We are about to experience a fantastic year to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Liverpool’s European Capital of Culture. The commitment of the city, to culture, has been significant and once again will shine the spotlight on our city and city region.
“I really welcome a long-term Culture and Creativity strategy to help us all to work in partnership and ensure that culture continues to be the valuable catalyst and contributor for social and economic growth”
Phil Redmond, Chair of the Liverpool City Region Cultural Partnership, said:
“The world is forever changing and no one is ever sure that the future will look like, especially the future world of work. Currently, change is probably happening at a faster pace than has even been seen before. That is why culture is so important. It’s what binds us all together. It’s the sum of all our creativity and the catalyst for change. But change needs to be managed and therefore needs a strategy that addresses the world of work.
“In the 21st century how will the work-life balance shift and how can culture, as the catalyst for change, help us to understand far-reaching and rapid change? How will it help us to become flexible and adaptable? This requires a collective act. To remember our shared past, present and future - our collective culture. To remember where we came from. Remember what we already have. But above all, remember that the best is yet to come”
Councillor Phil Davies, Leader of Wirral Council, and Combined Authority Portfolio Holder for Economic Development and Culture, said:
“As the Combined Authority Lead for Economic Development and Culture, I have been determined to develop an ambitious and long-term strategy to further enhance the Liverpool City Region’s culture and creative sector. This sector is an essential driver in stimulating creative entrepreneurialism and is also instrumental in generating substantial growth for local, regional and national economies.
“Over the last few months we have spoken to hundreds of local people, groups and organisations in the creative sector who told us what they valued about culture, what was important to them, and what their ideas were for improving what we do.
“I am proud that this ambitious strategy captures those views and creates an important framework for delivering our exciting plans for growing the culture and creative sector across the Liverpool City Region.”