We are delighted to announce that Westlands Entertainment Venue has been awarded vital funding as part of the first round of funding from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund for independent cinemas on behalf of the British Film Institute (BFI).
Westlands has been allocated a total of £38,926 by the BFI on behalf of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport to help the venue meet immediate costs faced in making the venue COVID-19 safe to protect visitors, staff and volunteers and ensure we continue to offer cinema-style viewings at the venue once lockdown restrictions are lifted.
Eligible cinemas were able to apply for Safety Grants to help venues meet the immediate costs of implementing Covid-secure measures and to enable them to continue to allow access to the arts, culture and film for residents across the UK. Funding has been allocated to help non-profit and independent cinemas in cities, towns and rural communities weather the disruption as a result of closure and reduced opening as a result of the pandemic.
This award is in addition to the £298,697 lifeline support grant received for the Octagon and Westlands in October last year on behalf of Arts Council England and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. The grant allocated has enabled us to protect jobs, retain skills within the industry and ensure the safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers when returning to our venues.
The grant is very welcome support for the venue, which since the 26th of December has re-closed to the public in line with Government restrictions imposed due to the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. The grant allocated will protect jobs and retain skills within the industry, whilst ensuring the safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers within the venue once we are able to reopen for cinema screenings.
We are very thankful for the support we have received from the community over the past ten months, from our colleagues and Foyer Club volunteers who have continued to donate their time to our success and to the patrons that have returned since July to show their support for the venue whilst restrictions have allowed indoor cinemas to operate.
Arts and Entertainment Venue Manager, Adam Burgan, said “Westlands is and will always be a community venue offering you the very best entertainment, from film to festivals. The period since March has been very worrying and difficult and while we have always tried to do whatever we can to continue being there for our communities this funding helps to protect the venues and people who work so hard to bring joy, entertainment and hope. It will help to ensure we can continue to be there for our audience, now and in the future”.
The Culture Recovery Fund is part of the Government’s £1.57 billion package to protect the UK’s culture and heritage sectors from the economic impacts of Covid-19.