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Why does culture matter to you?

Arts and culture brings a ripple effect of benefits to people’s lives, making places where people want to live, contributing to the economy, creating jobs and bringing people together. Public investment in the arts, which is currently equivalent to 0.1 per cent of total government spending, represents excellent value for money.

We are a social enterprise, recognised as one of Arts Council England’s National Portfolio Organisations, and supported by Manchester City Council.

Our public funding enables us to:

  • Support and nurture craft and design businesses in the North West. Without us, there would gap in the creative economy of around £750,000 and over 30 creative enterprises per year would be deprived from having space to grow.
  • Contribute to the development of the craft sector by promoting new graduates and offering opportunities through our makers’ network.
  • Support local creative businesses by running affordable creative business development.
  • Showcase the best of craft and design talent at work today with our innovative and exciting exhibits, which are free to visit.
  • Preserve our building – a vital part of Manchester’s market heritage and an important part of Manchester’s place as a centre for arts and culture.

You can find out more about the impact of our work from our informative infographic here

We need your help

This Autumn the Chancellor is making decisions about government spending for the next four years. He is currently asking all departments – including the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) – to plan for cuts of between 25% and 40%.

If funding for the arts is to be kept at current levels, we need every MP in every constituency to become a champion for the arts and to write to the Chancellor to tell him why they are so important.

What you can do

  1. Arts Council England has produced a 60-second film to celebrate arts and culture in England and to explain why they think #culturematters. If you feel inspired after watching the film, please share it with your social networks, tell the world why #culturematters to you and encourage others to do the same. You can watch the film here 
  2. Write to your local MP and make the case as to why culture is important in your community. You can check who your MP is, their title and their preferred contact details here 
  3. What Next? has produced a fantastic toolkit containing key messages, arguments and statistics, all of which can be used to make a compelling case to your MP. Download the toolkit here 
  4. If you are one of the many thousands of people who make their living as an entrepreneur, freelancer or sole-trader in the arts world then tell your MP about how you do this and why public investment in the arts is so important to your livelihood.

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