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Arts Council England Makes First Sustain Awards to Maintain Artistic Excellence During the Recession
LONDON.- Arts Council England has made the first awards from its £40 million Sustain fund for organisations under pressure as a result of the recession.

The first batch of awards are worth just under £4 million and will help 10 arts organisations maintain artistic excellence during the economic downturn.

The successful applicants include music, dance, theatre, visual arts and combined arts organisations in the East Midlands, West Midlands, the South East and London. The awards include:

The Ikon Gallery, Birmingham – £116,000
Dance Consortium, Birmingham – £104,000
Nottingham Playhouse – £362,600
South Hill Park Arts Centre, Bracknell – £114,000
English National Opera, London – £750,000
All awards from the Sustain fund are one-off and are made to cover the period 2009 – 2011.

Sustain was launched on 1 June 2009 as an open application fund of £40 million specifically for arts organisations suffering as a result of the recession. A total of 87 applications have been received to date.

Applications currently under consideration request £36 million. As with applications already considered, some of these may be approved in full, or a larger amount awarded; others may be approved only in part, or rejected.

Alan Davey, Chief Executive of Arts Council England said: “The aim of Sustain is to keep excellence, innovation and ambition alive for artists and arts organisations, drawing on lessons from previous recessions.

Sustain is one of a number of measures Arts Council England is taking to help artists and arts organisations counter the effects of the recession and play an active part in economic recovery.

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