From the illustrated streets of Brixton and the vibrant nightlife of Peckham to the many historical museums around Dulwich, creativity and culture make South London a unique and special place.
And so many household names spent formative years here, like AJ Tracey, Stormzy and Adele.
This is no coincidence.
An important part of South London’s status as a creative powerhouse is its cultural organisations.
They create opportunities for local people and artists, and often work in partnership with local authorities, schools and businesses to harness the social and economic impact of culture.
Late last year Arts Council England – the national development agency for creativity and culture – announced that more than 250 organizations in London will receive a £431.2million share over three years from this month.
We believe everyone should have access to quality art and culture, no matter where they live, rather than having to travel to Zone 1.
And as Area Director for London, I wanted to prioritize children and young people.
We’re investing in Wandsworth and Nine Elms World Heart Beat Music Academy.
It offers musical opportunities and lessons for young people aged five to 25 – and free instruments are even available if needed.
The Peckham Platform, a creative and educational art gallery, will soon reopen in a new location in Peckham Square.
Our funding ensures it can expand its development opportunities.
In Croydon we fund the Zoo Co Creative Ltd theater company.
They will create development opportunities for 14 to 18 year olds, deaf and disabled children and neurodiverse young adults.
Like other organizations we fund in the region, they will host activities related to Croydon’s tenure as the London Borough of Culture.
We’re also investing in Lewisham’s IRIE! Dance theater teaching African and Caribbean dance and drumming to young people.
In difficult times, this investment is so important.
Participation in the arts is crucial to supporting young people’s imagination, skill development and self-expression – fueling the success of our creative industries and nurturing the next generation of talent in South London.
Area Manager, London, Arts Council England
Photo credit – World Heart Beat Music Academy musicians recording and producing as part of their live streaming concert program. Credit Phil Conrad.
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