independent

Monday 16 September 2019

Arts funding of €1.68 million for Wexford

Wexford Arts Centre receives €140,000 in Arts Council funding.
Wexford Arts Centre receives €140,000 in Arts Council funding.

By Esther Hayden

Wexford receives more than €1.68 million in Arts Council funding, the highest in the region although much of the money is given to the Opera Festival.

Marie Brennan of Glasshouse Creative presented the members of Wexford County Council with an updated review of the county's art strategy.

She said the review is being carried out to review the processes and practices of the county's arts strategy in a contemporary context.

This, she said, will guide a sustainable arts strategy from 2016 onwards. Ms Brennan said an internal review has already been completed and a report on this is now available. Interviews and surveys are currently under way within the arts section and there will also be a number of public consultation meetings.

Ms Brennan said there is a growing need for the arts service to 'demonstrate economic value' for money.

She stressed that an arts service is vital for Wexford in terms of national and international significance noting that the county was in the process of a joint bid to secure the City Of Culture for 2016.

In addition to reviewing the current arts strategy she will also be examining any gaps in the provision of services.

Ms Brennan told the members that Wexford receives in excess of €1.68 million from the Arts Council.

€45,000 of this is given to Bui Bolg, €75,820 to Wexford County Council Arts Department while Wexford Arts Centre receives €140,000.

The lion's share of the funding, €1,420,000 is given the Festival Opera.

'Wexford gets the most funding in the region but most of it goes to the Opera House', she said.

In terms of the regions Wicklow receives the least amount followed by Carlow, Waterford, Kilkenny with Wexford receiving the most.

She also said Wexford had a thriving craft industry which was also being looked at in terms of the strategy.

Other aspects include music, literature, media, design, traditional Irish music and performance art.

Cllr Fionntan O Suilleabhain reminded Ms Brennan that the country is 'on the cusp of the centenary of the 1916 Rising which should be central to any arts in the coming year. It should also help with our bid for the capital of culture'. Cllr Johnny Mythen said the various Men's Sheds around the county were a 'bundle of creativity'.

Wexford People

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