Birmingham Arts Venue Receives 70% Funding Cut

One of Birmingham's most visited arts organisations has vowed to continue to offer arts for all despite an unprecedented 70% cut in funding from Birmingham City Council.

Midlands Art Centre, better known as 'mac' is a standalone charity and 28% of its income currently comes from public investment.

In 2015, Birmingham City Council invested £540,000 in the venue - a figure reduced the following year to £400,000. The proposed cuts for the new financial year will see mac’s funding reduced to just £120,000 – a total reduction of £420,000 over the last two years. In addition, supplementary income mac receives in the form of venue hire from council departments, will also be reduced amounting to a further £100,000 of lost income to mac.

The centre is a much-loved community resource which offers free events and activities to local residents. Visitors from Birmingham make up 82% of their footfall, which this year looks set to reach a record 1.2m. This makes mac the most visited free-admission venue in the region, and Visit England rank them as 14th most popular overall, ahead of Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and the Library of Birmingham. Deborah Kermode, CEO and Artistic Director said:

"We appreciate the difficulties the City Council face. As an organisation of real importance to our community we aim to stay true to our ethos - to provide arts for all. However, a cut of this magnitude will be felt and as a result we will need to review our current services and partnerships moving forward.

"Our long-standing relationship with the council, created at our inception in the 60s will continue. We have been assured of their continued support and welcome the opportunity to discuss our plans moving forward."


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