£400K Lottery funding boost for Culture year legacy projects

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Community arts and cultural projects in Derry are to benefit from £400,000 of Big Lottery funding.

The funding, announced this morning at the Nerve Centre, is designed to help build a 2013 City of Culture legacy.

Frank Hewitt, the Big Lottery Fund NI Chair said the grant would help support to people and communities across Derry city and county “ to build a legacy to the first UK City of Culture.”

The grant has been awarded to the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland’s Acorn Fund and will be used to provide grants for community arts and culture projects across Derry.

The grant will also support projects for young people and marginalised groups such as homeless people, ethnic minorities and people with learning disabilities.

The Big Lottery Fund announcement builds on the legacy of the Culture for All programme – a joint small grants programme delivered with the Arts Council of Northern Ireland – which invested £1.6 million into activities which supported groups across NI to take part in the City of Culture celebrations.

“I am delighted to be able to announce this grant which will help build on the success of the investment we made through the Culture for All programme,” Mr Hewitt said.

“We are looking forward to hearing how this grant will benefit local people to play their part in building the legacy.”

“The hope is that the Acorn Fund can model how the Community Foundation can localise its grant-making programmes by bringing grant programmes closer to local areas – in this case Co. Derry/Londonderry.”

“The emphasis on community arts and culture also allows us to celebrate the legacy of the spectacular 2013 City of Culture by building on both local enthusiasm and awareness.

“As a six year programme, this new funding can really help to model something new, which can build the Acorn Fund as a Fund for the North-West,” he said.