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Bristol Music Trust and St George’s Bristol awarded major funding by Arts Council England

Bristol Music Trust (the independent charity with responsibility for Colston Hall) and St George’s Bristol have been awarded £975,000 over three years in regular funding from Arts Council England in a unique arrangement that will see the two venues working in close partnership together to promote music in Bristol.

In an unprecedented move, these organisations have been awarded joint funding from Arts Council England, and will now become National Portfolio Organisations (NPOs).

This is the first time that music in Bristol has been recognised and supported in this way by the Arts Council.

The funding will be used to enhance the regular work of both organisations as well as to provide the opportunity for partnership working on special projects, such as the promoting of flagship classical concerts – and a range of joint programming and festivals. It also allows the two venues to collaborate on the development of audiences in the South West and ensure broader access to live music across the region.

Bristol Music Trust also runs Bristol Plays Music, the Music Hub for the city, and this new funding will allow the Trust and St George’s Bristol to work with thousands more young people from local schools and colleges, nurturing a love of music and opening up pathways into music performance, composition and management. The funding will run for three years and will give Bristol’s cultural life a much needed boost.

Louise Mitchell, Chief Executive, Bristol Music Trust / Colston Hall

“The achievement of NPO funding for music in Bristol will see a significant step change in our ability to make a real difference. We are very excited to be working together with our colleagues at St George’s and very proud to have achieved so much since Bristol Music Trust was formed in 2011.”

Suzanne Rolt, Director, St George’s Bristol

“Bristol has already been named the UK’s most musical city and this award will allow St George’s and Colston Hall to work together to contribute even more to the live music scene. It will benefit both professional and amateur musical talent and create new, imaginative series and festivals for people of all ages to enjoy.”

Phil Gibby, Area Director, South West, Arts Council England 

“We are very pleased to be welcoming Bristol Music Trust and St George’s Bristol into the national portfolio. The considerable ambition, skill and expertise of this consortium will develop and raise the profile of Bristol and the south west as a centre for music.  We very much look forward to continuing to work with Bristol Music Trust and St George’s in achieving our mission of great art and culture for everyone.”

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