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£6m that will create leading centre for Stratford arts

Theatre Royal, Stratford. Theatre Royal, Stratford.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014
2:08 PM

Stratford is set to establish itself as a leading arts and cultural centre after a £6million cash boost.

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The Arts Council of England (ACE) renewed the publicly-funded status of six arts organisations based in E15 last week and awarded each funding for three years from 2015.

The area has undergone major regeneration in recent years and the extra money will help them meet the needs of expanding communities in new developments like the E20 neighbourhood in the Olympic Park.

The biggest share of the money went to the Theatre Royal, Stratford, which received £3m – a 14.2 per cent increase on what it received in the previous funding round in 2011.

Kerry Michael, artistic director of the Theatre Royal, said: “We’re very pleased to have been awarded an increase.

“The support plays a vital role in helping us to deliver our ambitious programme of performances, outreach and young people’s work”.

Stratford Circus and Discover Children’s Story Centre will additionally benefit from ACE’s small capital grants awards, subsidised with Lottery money.

The grants will match investment into improving facilities made by Newham Council.

Stratford Circus director, Clare Connor, said: “This much-needed investment is vital to sustaining the artistic programme to meet the needs of our communities due to expand in east London, especially with the new developments in E20.”

She added: “Funding will provide much needed replacements for outdated equipment while funding from Newham Council will enable us to upgrade our public facilities.

“Together, this enables us to deliver a more comfortable and professional environment for our artists and audiences, and importantly will address efforts for improved sustainability.”

Following ACE’s national review of funding, East London Dance, Daily Life Ltd and Urban Development have also had their National Portfolio Organisation status reaffirmed.

ACE London area director, Joyce Wilson, said: “All of these organisations contribute to the exciting mix of arts and cultural organisations we have in London.

“We have also awarded Theatre Royal Stratford East an uplift to expand its work around talent and audience development, with an important focus on diversity.”

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