National Portrait Gallery announces three-year closure

06 Nov 2019

The gallery said closing completely from June 2020 until spring 2023 was the best way to complete its £35.5m redevelopment while protecting visitors, staff and its collection. A spokesperson said the closure will involve staff changes including some job losses, but no further details have yet been provided.

Cuts to Dorset arts funding likely

06 Nov 2019

Dorset Council is considering cutting local arts funding by up to 10%, a scenario arts and community groups have argued against. They say a reduction in their local authority funding is likely to affect their ability to attract income from other sources and lessen their overall value to Dorset.

Bradford cultural workers strike again

06 Nov 2019

About 50 museum and library staff returned to the picket line as part of a three-day-long strike. They are protesting Bradford Council's plans to cut more than £1m from its museums and libraries budget in the coming year.

NPO boss resigns after council orders booking of controversial comedian

Middlesborough Town Hall
05 Nov 2019

Middlesbrough’s Mayor allegedly demanded the Town Hall book Roy Chubby Brown against concerns the show will be offensive and unpopular.

Conservatoire hit with discrimination claims

05 Nov 2019

Performing arts students at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland have demanded an apology and compensation for alleged "ableism, queerphobia and transphobia". The complainants have made their grievances public despite warnings from the Conservatoire's directors to keep the claims confidential.

GSA's use of donated £20m under investigation

04 Nov 2019

The Scottish Fundraising Standards Panel has confirmed it is looking into how the Glasgow School of Art spent £20m in donations to restore its fire-ravaged Mackintosh Building. The Daily Mail reports the charity had also received more than £50m from insurers to cover the damage.

A spokesperson for GSA has disputed this figure, telling AP the insurance payout was only £47m.

Equity advises against 'ladies and gentlemen'

04 Nov 2019

The actors' union's new guidelines for working with LGBT performers encourages venues to instead adopt "gender neutral terminology for collective calls, both front of house and backstage". Sadler's Wells and the Barbican have already removed gendered phrases; the National Theatre says it will phase out their use.

Olympic Park cultural quarter already £14m over budget

An artist's drawing of the planned Stratford Waterfront development
01 Nov 2019

Auditors warned that urgent action was needed to avert overspending and delays to the project before planning permission for four key buildings was granted in June. LLDC says it is still in the process of addressing these concerns.

£2m study into ‘scaling up’ arts and health interventions

Photo of dance thearpy
01 Nov 2019

A research team of artists, scientists and clinicians will investigate “the impact and scalability of arts interventions” on the physical and mental health of more than 800 patients.

Culture Secretary steps down

01 Nov 2019

Nicky Morgan has announced she will not stand in December's general election, citing the "clear impact" on her family as motivation to leave parliament after 18 years. Morgan's departure will mark the end of her brief tenure as Culture Secretary. She was the second MP to hold the role in 2019.

Accessible ticketing comes online

01 Nov 2019

Ticketmaster has launched a booking validation process so fans with accessibility requirements can secure wheelchair-friendly spaces, seats for personal assistants, and seating with a view of sign language interpreters. Managing Director Andrew Parsons said the company "knew we had to do more for disabled fans", saying equal access is "an ongoing process and one we continue to prioritise". The system will be rolled out for upcoming events at Glasgow's SEE Hydro and Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff.

£42m Paisley Museum revamp approved

01 Nov 2019

Renfrewshire Council has granted planning persmission to redevelop the Category A listed Victorian building as part of £100m investment in cultural venues and outdoor spaces. The project, due to reopen in 2022, is expected to quadruple annual audience numbers to 125,000 and add £79m to the local economy over the next 30 years.

£200k for Cornish culture

31 Oct 2019

A new fund announced by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government is intended to "prevent an England-only minority language and culture from dying", the Government says.

But while Cornish officials welcomed the grants to support language learning and heritage projects, they challenged this characterisation of their culture. Liberal Democrat candidate Tim Styles said: "I like to think of our peninsula as ‘Cornish’ not an English minority as if we were some sort of fringe group. We can exist as a distinct region, particularly if Cornwall Council were devolved more powers from Westminster."

Police allegedly force removal of biennale work

30 Oct 2019

An artwork that references controversial police raid killings in Karachi, Pakistan, has allegedly been removed from the city's biennale following intimidation by plain clothes officers.

Pakistani newspaper the Dawn has reported that the officers demanded organisers close artist Adeela Suleman's exhibit, which features 444 concrete tombstones, before attempting to damage the installation. Karachi Biennale organisers said Suleman's perspective was "not compatible" with the event's theme of 'Ecology and the Environment': "politicising that platform will go against our efforts to bring art into the public and drawing artists from the fringe to the mainstream cultural discourse."

£300k revamp for Welsh theatre

30 Oct 2019

Plans for the redevelopment of Borough Theatre in Abergavenny have been lodged with Monmouthshire County Council in South Wales. The venue will get new seating, including designated wheelchair viewing areas, a larger bar, and unisex bathroom facilities. The council's planning committee is expected to review the plans in the coming weeks.

Research to investigate censorship in the arts

29 Oct 2019

An ArtsProfessional survey will examine whether fear of “biting the hand that feeds” is affecting freedom of expression within the arts and cultural sector.

UK loses soft power crown as Brexit sours reputation

A photo of a large stately home
29 Oct 2019

Researchers say ongoing political turmoil has had a “clear, negative impact” on the country’s global standing.

Getty Center 'ready' for fire

29 Oct 2019

A fire that broke out near Los Angeles' historic Getty Center has already burned more than 600 acres, forcing school closures and evacuations of nearby neighbourhoods. The museum's officials say the center is designed to be impervious to fire and smoke and that a network of underground pipes allows sprinklers to activate as soon as fire touches the ground.

University of South Wales axes dance degree

29 Oct 2019

The Cardiff-based institution is closing its Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in dance, in part because "projected recruitment figures for the degree mean that we will not have enough students in future to be able to continue to provide a high quality education", a spokesperson said. The university is looking for ways to continue providing dance via a wider performance curriculum.

Millions more visit major museums

Photo of Terracotta Warriors
28 Oct 2019

Several museums and galleries have recorded their highest visitor numbers in a decade – leading DCMS to claim it was a “record breaking year for museums and galleries in England”.


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