Online resource for innovative culture investment

The Local Government Association (LGA) and Arts Council England have collaborated to create the first online resource to help councils develop innovative ways to invest in culture.

The Culture Hub: good practice in cultural services provides case studies of local authorities who have ‘found creative ways to invest in arts and culture’, providing on-going support to those planning cultural services within councils. It will become build a database of experience and learning that helps improve practice across the board.

Councils are continuously investing in culture to drive a better quality of life for their residents, remaining the largest funder of arts and culture across the UK. Part of the resource will look how this relationship can continue amid tighter budgets.

Ian Stephens, chair of the LGA Culture, Tourism and Sport Board, said: “Councils have continued to face budget reductions and this has placed increasing pressures on continuing to deliver effective services, but councils continue to take a lead in developing innovative ways to provide excellent cultural services.

“The case studies show how cultural activity contributes to every single one of councils’ priority corporate objectives, such as improving health and well-being and economic regeneration. They demonstrate how hard councils are working with their partners to come up with different ways to deliver their cultural services, whether through direct work, commissioning services or trust models.”

Darren Henley, chief executive of Arts Council England, added: “Where councils choose to continue to invest in arts and culture, they can achieve great things. Many local authorities face tough decisions right now, when public finances are tight. But at the Arts Council, we’re clear in backing the ambition of those councils who invest in culture, or which find innovative new models for developing the future of arts and culture in their villages, towns and cities. The new Culture Hub and our work with the LGA is just one way, as the nation’s cultural development agency, we’re helping England’s artists, arts organisations, museums and libraries to continue to thrive.”