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Reprieve for SYT as Scottish Government match private sponsorship funds

Scottish Youth Theatre’s chief executive Jacky Hardacre. Photo: Robert Perry

Scottish Youth Theatre will remain open throughout 2018, after securing a short-term funding agreement with the Scottish Government.

The agreement sees the government match £150,000 of private sponsorship secured by the company.

It will allow the company to continue to operate throughout 2018 – including fulfilling activity in Scotland’s Year of Young People.

SYT recently announced that, following its failure to secure regularly funded organisation status with Creative Scotland, it would have to cease trading in July 2018 [1].

The funding will give the company an opportunity to identify a long-term funding solution, and to consider how to further develop work beyond Glasgow, where it is based, with any partnerships that would make that possible.

Announcing the match funding, Scottish culture secretary Fiona Hyslop recognised the support from SYT for young people to find their voice and launch their careers as actors and theatre professionals, as well as the “widespread concern” at the announcement of its closure.

She said: “This funding from partners will allow the theatre to maintain its work and complete the ongoing positive changes to its business. It will also give time for further dialogue about a longer-term funding strategy.

“I have set out this offer to the Scottish Youth Theatre and I have encouraged it to continue exploring all options available to secure a more permanent funding solution.

“I have also discussed with it its continuing ambitions to improve the reach, depth and quality of Scottish Youth Theatre’s work across Scotland and how this funding will help it towards that goal.”

SYT said it will now engage with experts from across the cultural and business sectors to build a model that is accessible and sustainable.

Jacky Hardacre, SYT’s chief executive said: “With a future now secured for Scottish Youth Theatre, our focus is firmly on ensuring the nation’s young people have their own thriving national theatre company to engage with, be inspired by and to aspire to be a part of.”