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Photo: JayBright Photography

Creative funding for B&D

The Arts Council England has announced that it will be funding Creative Barking and Dagenham for a further three years. The funding comes through the national Creative People and Places Programme.

Creative Barking and Dagenham will now go ahead and commission artists and collaborators to create great arts events for the public.  The organisation will be building on its track record of enabling residents to make decisions about the creative activity they want to see in the borough. It will also be looking to develop more opportunities for people to get involved in the organisation’s output.

Plans for 2016-19 include a summer and winter festival programme, artist residencies, three types of commissioning to support creative activity led by local individuals and organisations, a continuing professional development programme, a trips and visits offer across the art-forms and the development of the popular Cultural Connectors network.

The programme chimes in well with Barking and Dagenham Council’s plan, unveiled earlier this month at The Boathouse in Barking’s Ice House Quarter, to become London’s first Creative Industries Zone. This will see the Council delivering affordable workspace together with living accommodation (aka “homes”).

The plans were explained by Barking and Dagenham Council Leader Cllr Darren Rodwell who was joined by fashion designer Wayne Hemingway. They felt that high rents in Shoreditch, Bethnal Green and Dalston were pushing artists and others involved in creative work out of the heart of the East End and driving them to look further east for living and working accommodation.