LOCAL and national cultural figures came together today for the first Culture Steering Group meeting.
LOCAL and national cultural figures came together today, alongside Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham and Culture Portfolio Leads, Linda Thomas Leader of Bolton Council and Chief Executive of Wigan Council Donna Hall, to discuss cultural plans for the city-region.
The 19-strong steering group is made up of members representing national cultural organisations, as well as home grown artists, including Director of Culture and HOME CEO Dave Moutrey, and Lowry Chief Executive Julia Fawcett.
A range of topics was discussed at the first meeting held today (Thursday, November 8) including Greater Manchester’s Culture Strategy – which is currently up for consultation, The Great Place Project and a number of projects currently in development.
Reflecting on today’s meeting, Chair of the Steering Group Linda Thomas said: “I’m delighted with how the first meeting went with our Culture Steering Group. It was great to have everyone in one room to discuss the cultural offerings in all boroughs of Greater Manchester and to have an open and honest discussion on how we can do culture better.
“We need to work to ensure that artists and organisations deliver high quality culture that is reflective of our people and places in Greater Manchester, but also maintains the height of our ambition. We will continue to improve on the city-regions offerings, putting Greater Manchester on the map as the lead for culture regionally, nationally and internationally.”
Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham launched the steering group in July to strengthen the arts and culture sectors for the city-region. He said: “There has always been great culture backing in Greater Manchester and we need to support it in a way that it improves lives across Greater Manchester. Creativity needs to be at the heart of what we do, embedding culture into our wider agenda ensuring there are opportunities in all boroughs of the city-region.
“The steering group has the freedom to come up with ideas that will help people across Greater Manchester, which is both authentic and refreshing. There is a genuine appetite to make our city-region, working alongside its people and a range of cultural organisations, to be the best place in the world to create, participate and engage with culture and heritage.”
Chief Executive of Wigan Council and co-chair of the Steering Group, Donna Hall said: “We need to build on our amazing reputation as a culturally rich city-region as well as supporting the people of Greater Manchester to fulfil their creative potential.
“Creativity can be found throughout Greater Manchester, in our homes, on our streets, in our nurseries, schools, colleges, workplaces and in our care settings. Today was just the first meeting with the Steering Group and I am looking forward to working alongside them to build on the city-regions cultural offerings.”
The steering group will meet four times a year to discuss a range of topics and to identify opportunities to develop Greater Manchester’s cultural offer for our residents, artists and visitors.