The Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Derry City Council have launched a £900,000 legacy fund ‘to continue the cultural transformation of the city’ as its year as the first UK City of Culture comes to an end.
The fund will open for applications in January 2014. A launch event was also announced, taking place on 17 January.
Derry City Council has announced a legacy plan which sets out objectives under five themes: Celebration City; Culture Connecting Communities; Creative Economy; Cultural Tourism; and Telling a New Story. The council has promised to ‘work with the community and all our stakeholders to determine whether this is the best approach for Legacy’ over the coming years, but will start to put its plan into action by designating Derry-Londonderry as City of Music 2014.
Mayor Martin Riley said: ‘Derry City Council’s legacy promises are about providing cultural sustainability and encouraging communities and visitors to continue their connections with culture and the city. We are a proud and ambitious city with many talented and creative people. The city has made amazing progress during 2013 in how we look and feel and we want to continue with this transformation.’
Mayor Riley also announced plans for a dedicated website, First Break, which will match musicians with venues across the region from the new year.
Bob Collins, chair of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, said: ‘We are delighted to make today’s funding announcement. The Arts Council’s long-term investment in Derry has contributed significantly to the success of UK City of Culture 2013. The arts have transformed this city and we are now making a substantial commitment to continue our partnership with Derry City Council to ensure Arts and Culture continue to help regenerate the city, particularly in the most deprived communities.’