Arts Council England Funding Secured

Fri 4 Nov 2022

Arts Council England continues its support of Artsreach to keep culture alive in Dorset’s rural communities

Today (4 November) Arts Council England announced that Dorset charity Artsreach will remain as a National Portfolio Organisation, successfully securing three years of funding to support rural touring in partnership with Dorset’s rural communities.

Phil Gibby, Area Director, South West, Arts Council England said: “We’re pleased to be welcoming Artsreach back into the Arts Council’s 2023-26 National Portfolio programme. Their fantastic calendar of cultural activity reaches people across Dorset. Their programme of performances and creative workshops connects rural communities, organisations and artists to make a real difference to people’s lives. This renewed funding helps us to achieve the vision we set out in our strategy Let’s Create – so that there are more opportunities to take part in creativity, and be inspired no matter where we live.” 

Since 1990 Artsreach has provided people living in rural Dorset with access to professional live performances and creative arts projects in rural venues and communities, at affordable and accessible prices. Its programme is delivered in partnership with a large network of community volunteers and together the scheme coordinates around 150 high quality professional events every year, usually in village halls and often in rurally isolated communities right across rural Dorset.

Artsreach Director Kerry Bartlett said “This continued support from Arts Council England is invaluable in enabling us to continue to deliver our programme of cultural activity, enriching and positively impacting the lives of people living in rural Dorset by connecting and empowering communities. Our volunteer promoters work tirelessly to make Artsreach events happen in their communities, and this funding recognises both the work they do, and the quality of the artistic work presented on the Artsreach programme now, and over the last thirty-two years.”

Chair of Trustees, Patricia Pryor said “We’re delighted that Artsreach continues to be included in the ACE national portfolio. This is recognition of the important role Artsreach plays in our rural communities and testament to the hard work of our network of promoters. Congratulations!” 

The confirmation of this grant funding, combined with the support Artsreach receives from Dorset Council, will ensure that the scheme is able to continue to bring professional live performances and creative arts projects to rural venues right across Dorset, in turn helping to nurture strong, healthy communities.