Inaccessible Peterloo memorial unveiled in Manchester

14 Aug 2019

Accessibility campaigners say it is a "kick in the teeth" that the £1m sculpture was made public on Tuesday, three days before the 200th anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre. They had complained repeatedly that the monument, designed by Turner prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller, is inaccessible to wheelchair users.

Accessibility advisor Mark Todd said: “As it’s currently designed, everybody is stood at the top speaking down to disabled people at the bottom. If you wanted the worst metaphor for inequality, there it is.” Manchester City Council says modifications will be made "to ensure the monument is fully accessible".

National Railway Museum staff to strike

14 Aug 2019

Unionised workers at the York venue will walk off the job on 30 August amid a dispute over their most recent pay rise. Prospect union says some staff are paid less than £9 per hour. The Science Museum Group said staff were offered pay rises of between 1.5% and 6.9% earlier this year.

No London-Edinburgh rail during Fringe finale

13 Aug 2019

Edinburgh's Fringe, International and Military Tattoo festivals have pleaded with Network Rail to delay works that will stop all services heading into the city from King's Cross on August 24 and 25, saying the disruption will have "a massively detrimental effect on our business and yours". But the rail company says it won't change its plans: "We've not closed the East Main Line in this way for more than 20 years and it is overdue an upgrade."

Opera star faces sexual harassment claims

13 Aug 2019

Eight singers and a dancer have alleged Placido Domingo sexually harrassed them, and more than 30 other industry workers say they witnessed "inappropriate sexually tinged behaviour" by the multiple Grammy award winner, according to Associated Press.

In a statement, Domingo said the allegations are inaccurate: "Still, it is painful to hear that I may have upset anyone or made them feel uncomfortable, no matter how long ago and despite my best intentions. I believed that all of my interactions and relationships were always welcomed and consensual."

Planning for £5m arts centre revamp approved

12 Aug 2019

Jacksons Lane Arts Centre's capacity will increase from 150 to 180 and the vault of its old church roof will be exposed in a remodelling of the North London site. Citizens Design Bureau, which has gained planning approval for the works, said it would address the building's "creaking services and outdated decor".

Ballet dancers displeased with ACE plan

12 Aug 2019

Leading British ballet stars have said that a proposal to make groups seeking arts funding prove their 'relevance' to modern society threaten artistic freedom, with one describing it as the "deathbed of true creativity". Senior executives fear they will have to drop classic productions like "The Nutcracker" and "Romeo and Juliet" because they usually attract white, middle-class audiences.

The Stables wins fight for protections

08 Aug 2019

Milton Keynes Council has unanimously voted to place a Deed of Easement on the development of new homes next to the music venue, resolving a long-running dispute. The decision means any future residents will be told about the potential for noise before buying the property and will have their right to make complaints restricted.

Who gets ACE funding? Diversity data reveals surprising trends

A photo of people at Pride event holding rainbow-coloured fans
08 Aug 2019

BME-led organisations were 60% more likely to fall at the first hurdle of Project Grants applications – while LGBT-led groups were 25% more likely to secure grants.

£45m Edinburgh concert hall under way

08 Aug 2019

Contractors have been appointed for the 1000-seat auditorium, which was approved by councillors in April against the objections of the company developing the neighbouring St James Centre. The new facility, Dunard Centre Concert Hall, will be a major festival centre and home to the Scottish Chamber Orchestra.

Live music in the Midlands ‘rapidly declining’

Photo of musical performance
07 Aug 2019

An undersized musician population, a lack of artist support and performance space pressures: why live music in the Midlands is falling behind the rest of the UK.

Jazz venue closes after one month in business

07 Aug 2019

The Arts House in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham, has cited contractor delays, unforeseen refurbishment costs and lacklustre weekday trade as reasons for the venue's sudden closure. “We have built a truly special and unique venue for Sutton but the dream is over before it had a chance to begin," owner Darren Ratcliffe said.

Design Museum under pressure from anti-arms campaigners

Photo of the Design Museum
06 Aug 2019

The institution has rejected campaigners’ claims that it has “done nothing” a year after promising to reassess its fundraising approach – but won’t make the review public.

Export ban on £10m Turner painting

06 Aug 2019

Arts Minister Rebecca Pow has prevent the export of "The Dark Rigi", the sole remaining work from JMW Turner's Rigi series, until December 1 to allow time for a fundraising campaign to keep the 1842 watercolour in Britian. Pow said it would be a "terrible loss for the whoel country" if the painting was sold overseas.

Boy thrown from Tate Modern viewing platform

06 Aug 2019

A 17-year-old has been charged with the attempted murder of the six-year-old French child after throwing him from a 10th-floor viewing platform. Scotland Yard detectives said they have not yet been abe to establish a motive for the "truly shocking" incident.

‘A national shortage of artists’: Immigration rules for creatives relaxed

Photo of street artist
06 Aug 2019

It is set to become easier for UK organisations to recruit dancers, choreographers, musicians and artists from outside Europe – but what happens after the 31 October Brexit deadline remains unclear.

Pledge Music liquidated owing thousands

Photo of musician
05 Aug 2019

The Insolvency Office will investigate the crowdfunding platform’s failure, but repayment of what’s “rightfully” owed to musicians seems unlikely.

Art shop bans Sir Anish Kapoor in row over paint colours

05 Aug 2019

The Art Shop in central London had attempted to prevent the Turner prize-winning artist from obtaining its ‘pinkest pink’ colour, but Kapoor posted a picture on Instagram of his middle finger dipped in the paint. The artist had previously angered the shop, and others within the artistic community, by obtaining exclusive rights to use Vantablack – the ‘blackest black’ – in his work in 2016.

ACE is too lax on low pay, says union

05 Aug 2019

Paul Fleming, Equity’s Industrial Organiser for Theatre, said Arts Council England was not always challenging instances of low pay on projects it funds, despite this being a condition of the grants. “What we know from members on the ground is that [ACE’s policy] isn’t the reality in terms of what is being applied,” said Fleming.

Edinburgh festival artists reject payment in UK pounds

05 Aug 2019

Director Fergus Linehan said growing numbers of performers were asking to be paid in dollars or euros as the UK currency plunges in value. In November, the organisers decided to lock £1m into a set exchange rate to protect funds for artists’ fees.

London Borough of Culture: Council U-turns on funding commitment

Photo of Waltham Forest District
02 Aug 2019

Waltham Forest has backtracked on an offer of £35k funding for a festival whose legacy formed part of the evidence used to support the council’s winning bid.


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