Calderdale is spared the worst of arts cuts

ARTS organisations in Calderdale have largely escaped the latest cull on culture spending.

Halifax’s Square Chapel Centre for the Arts, Northern Broadsides and IOU Theatre have all secured repeat funding from Arts Council England until 2015.

The Government-funded body has dropped 206 organisations from its portfolio and slashed its support for many others in the face of a 14.9 per cent cut to its budget.

But Square Chapel’s funding has risen by 55.2 per cent – that’s £476,567 over the next three years.

Director Sally Martin said: “It indicates that the Arts Council has great confidence in us delivering high-quality professional work and participation opportunities at such a difficult time,” she said.

IOU Theatre at Dean Clough, Halifax, has also seen its funding increased by 7.4 per cent to £575,742.

Touring theatre company Northern Broadsides, also based at Dean Clough, has been dealt a 6.5 per cent cut but will still receive the biggest total of £779,141.

The only Calderdale casualty is Arc Publications in Todmorden, which has lost its £35,000-a-year funding.

Tony Ward, managing editor of the poetry publisher, said: “Their reasoning is we’re not financially sustainable, but no one the Arts Council gives money to is sustainable without grants.

“Poetry is not sustainable without patronage – never has been, never will be. But we think it’s valuable, as we believed the Arts Council did.”

l What do you think of the funding announcements? Email yoursay@halifaxcourier.co.uk