Harris wins £900,000 Arts Council England Funding

The Harris secured National Portfolio funding (NPO) from Arts Council England (ACE) on Tuesday 27th June 2017.

The funding is to support activities and staffing across the building, and £225,000 will be available to the Harris for four financial years from April 2018, making a total of £900,000 across the four years.

ACE has funded the Harris in recognition of the crucial role it plays in the cultural landscape across Lancashire. The bid was submitted in January, and is part of the Re-imagining the Harris project. Lancashire County Council and Preston City Council are working together to reinforce the role of the Harris as a creative, civic and community centre for all communities.

The four year programme submitted to ACE has been developed through a combination of consultation, as well as a clear assessment of the role a 21st century museum, art gallery and library should play. It is keenly focused on the cultural role the Harris plays for Preston, and Lancashire, and how this role can be expanded and further developed to support the city and the region.

The programme is based around four key strands, and the NPO funding is allocated to projects within these strands and utilised across the museum, art gallery and library: 

• Made in Preston – A celebration of creativity in Preston and Lancashire with excellence at the core. Ensuring that the Harris acts as the creative centre of the city, and encouraging all, whether world class artist or first time visitor, to take part in creating and making, inspired by the Harris and the collections it cares for.

• Collections for the 21st century – Working with communities to develop collections for the future, and use and reinterpret the existing wonderful collections in the Harris, including the hidden gem of a historic book collection, to inspire and engage.

• Communities at the heart, in the heart of our communities –
The Harris is the civic and community focal point for greater Preston. Communities will be at the heart of all that we do, and the Harris will be a place where everyone, whatever their background, is welcome and inspired. We will go out into communities, particularly those that are currently not engaging with the culture and heritage on their doorstep, to identify and overcome barriers to participation.

• A thriving cultural sector in Lancashire – The Harris has been a focal point for the museum, cultural and creative sector in the county and beyond for many years. As we move forward we must demonstrate proactive and sustainable leadership. This will be done at three levels: by ensuring our own long term survival, providing strong leadership to the museums sector in the county, and actively supporting the wider creative sector in the city and more widely.

Arts Council England champions, develops and invests in artistic and cultural experiences that enrich people’s lives. We support a range of activities across the arts, museums and libraries – from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts to collections. Great art and culture inspires us, brings us together and teaches us about ourselves and the world around us. In short, it makes life better. We invest public money from government and the National Lottery to help create these experiences for as many people as possible across the country. 







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