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Portfolio: Culture

The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, has appointed the leader of Bolton Council, Linda Thomas, as the portfolio lead for Culture, Arts and Leisure.

Cllr Thomas will lead plans to bring communities together by encouraging residents to get involved in Greater Manchester’s thriving culture and heritage. She will also work to ensure everyone can benefit from the world-leading music, theatre and sporting venues Greater Manchester has to offer.

The portfolio will oversee the development and delivery of an ambitious, over-arching GMCA strategy for Culture, Arts and Leisure, which will play a pivotal role in delivering a range of Greater Manchester Strategy priorities. 

Read an overview of the portfolio here.

Culture Steering Group

The great and good of the local and national cultural sector are being brought together to form the Greater Manchester Culture Steering Group who will guide work being done to help support and help the culture, arts and heritage sectors across Greater Manchester. 

Read more information on the steering group and see who is a member here.

Greater Manchester's Night-Time Economy Adviser, Sacha Lord

Warehouse Project and Parklife founder Sacha Lord has been unveiled as Greater Manchester’s first-ever night-time economy adviser.

Appointed by Mayor Andy Burnham, Sacha will champion Greater Manchester’s thriving nightlife and set out bold plans to ensure people on a night out can have a safe and enjoyable time. 

He will be supported by a night-time economy panel, which will comprise experts from across Greater Manchester to develop, discuss and deliver plans to develop the city-region’s nightlife, making it stronger, safer, better-connected, and an even more attractive destination.

Read more about the night-time economy advisor role here.

Greater Manchester Music Review

Working alongside UK Music and a panel of experts, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham has set up a major review to see how the city-region’s thriving scene can be nurtured, encouraged and refreshed.

The review will look into Greater Manchester’s musical strengths, as well as where the music scene can be improved, ensuring that artists are supported to develop sustainable careers where everyone can access music in a safe and inclusive way.

UK Music will lead on the review, supported by three chairs: Inspiral Carpets legend Martyn Walsh, former Sony UK CEO Ged Doherty - who also chairs the British Phonographic Industry and the Brits, and Karen Boardman, Co-Director Crisis Management LLP.

GM Moving

Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham has endorsed the four-year plan to get Greater Manchester Moving. He has committed his leadership to the ambitious plan, as part of a collaborative approach with Greater Manchester Combined Authority, Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership and Sport England. GM Moving is setting a new mission for everyone in Greater Manchester to become more active, securing the fastest and greatest improvement to the health, wealth and wellbeing of the 2.8 million residents in the city region.

This will be backed up by a new and stretching target, running over the next four years. The aim is to double the rate of past improvements and achieve the goal of having 75 per cent of people living in Greater Manchester active or fairly active by 2025.

Information on Arts, Leisure and Culture Fund:


Lead member

Linda thomas thumbjpg 1

Councillor Linda Thomas

Telephone: 01204 332090


Social media: @BoltonLeader -




Information on Culture