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Kneehigh awarded £800k to cultivate arts engagement on Cornish coast

Kneehigh's The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk. Photo: Jonathan Keenan
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Cornwall-based theatre company Kneehigh has been given £800,000 to stimulate cultural activity in the area.

The company, based in St Austell Bay, was awarded the money by the Coastal Communities Fund in its latest round of grants. The funding will enable Kneehigh to strengthen ties with its local community and inspire people to work in the area’s cultural and tourism sectors, its chair Alan Livingston said.

Kneehigh will embark on a New Generation Programme to develop a centre of excellence that will equip cultural practitioners and tourism leaders with the skills they need to champion “world-class storytelling”.

It is hoped that the scheme will help develop projects that will in turn generate employment for themselves and others, eventually becoming a self-sustaining way to safeguard culture in St Austell’s rural coastal area.

Kneehigh’s grant is one of 16 projects that have been fast-tracked by the government’s Coast Communities Fund, each receiving a share of £6 million.

Another St Austell-based project received £1 million to transform the area in to a visitor destination and support a programme of cultural initiatives, events and skills training to attract more visitors.

Others to receive money in this round include a community arts project in South Shields, which has been given £61,390 towards the refurbishment of a local building that will be turned into a community, cultural and heritage hub.

Elsewhere a heritage activity and events programme in Ipswich was awarded £414,763, while successful projects also include a disability access scheme for tourists and visitors to the Fylde and Blackpool coasts, a wildlife programme in Lancashire and a construction skills hub in Scarborough.

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