‘Funding shortfall will not see events cut’ - Culture Company

Shona McCarthy, Culture Company CEO.
Shona McCarthy, Culture Company CEO.

The chief executive of the body overseeing Derry’s year as City of Culture says she is confident a £600,000 funding shortfall will not result in cuts to the year long programme of events.

The funding concerns come after it emerged income from sponsorship and ticket sales has fallen short of expectations.

The Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure - the main funders of the culture year - have said options to make up the deficit include “varying degrees of scale back on the Culture Company’s contribution to the cultural programme and marketing budget.”

Derry’s Culture Company says its current shortfall stands at £611,000.

The Company’s Chief Executive Shona McCarthy says she remains confident that the money will be found and no events will be cut.

“I am absolutely confident, and you can hold me to this in December, that the final £611,000 will be raised and we will not have to make any cuts to the programme.”

It has also emerged Derry City Council unsuccessfully asked the Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment to help fund a £1.3million marketing campaign.

A DETI spokeswoman said: “The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment has already made a very significant contribution to the UK City of Culture, through the Northern Ireland Tourist Board, Tourism Ireland and Invest Northern Ireland.

“Any request for additional funding from the Executive would have to be routed through DCAL as the sponsoring department.”