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SE1 arts bosses welcome Government’s bail-out for culture sector

London SE1 website team

Bosses of some of SE1's biggest cultural institutions have welcomed the Government's announcement of a £1.57 billion package of grants and loans to bail out museums, galleries, theatres, cinemas, heritage sites and music venues during the COVID-19 crisis.

SE1 arts bosses welcome Government’s bail-out for culture sector

The Old Vic responded to the Government announcement with a statement: "Rishi Sunak's lifeline to the arts could not be better judged.

"A world breaking £1.57 billion for our world leading sector which has been hit hardest by the pandemic.

"As the industry faces continued uncertainty around reopening and returning to income generation, this bailout package should ensure that our vibrant, complex ecology will not collapse.

"We look forward to the clarity that will come over the coming weeks around how we are able to access the funds announced."

The Old Vic's neighbours on The Cut also welcomed the news.

"It's a real vindication that we've been listened to, and that the Government understands that we were dying on our knees, and that we are an important part of our country's recovery," Kwame Kweh-Armah, artistic director of the Young Vic, told Times Radio.

"And so we're very pleased for this intervention that will hopefully get us from here to April."

Neil Constable, chief executive of Shakespeare's Globe, said: "As an independent charity, The Globe needs support throughout this difficult time and will now have the opportunity to plan to reopen fully by early 2021.

"We will of course be taking opportunities, if social distancing allows, to reopen earlier, and until then this investment allows us to offer our world-class performances and education online for audiences and students across the world, before safely bringing our actors, creatives, staff, and visitors alike together in our wonderful iconic theatres."

In a statement, National Theatre bosses Rufus Norris and Lisa Burger said: "The National Theatre emphatically welcomes this vital support from Government, which recognises the crucial economic, cultural and social impact of theatre and culture in the life of our nation.

"We are extremely thankful to see such a strong vote of confidence from the Prime Minister, the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the Culture Secretary.

"Although there will be many challenges ahead to operating in the new environment, the NT and theatre companies across the country stand ready to respond with creativity and commitment, and to reopen as soon as is safe.

"We feel very positive that this major investment will reach and sustain the vital talent and infrastructure – both organisations and freelancers – which make British theatre truly world-leading."

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