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Culture Minister backs Transformation Campaign

Ed Vaizey MP visited Colston Hall today, Tuesday 2nd June, to get an update on the £45 million transformation campaign, in one of his first public visits in the new Government.

Earlier this year the Culture Minister highlighted his support for the redevelopment campaign when he issued a letter of support for the campaign, in which he stated he “wanted to write to express support for the campaign to complete the redevelopment of Colston Hall. The Government is keen to encourage the development of nationally significant arts organisations outside London and we certainly see Bristol Music Trust/Colston Hall as one of those.”

In February 2015, the campaign was formally launched in the House of Commons with a call for central Government to match Bristol City Council’s £10 million funding pledge. The national launch was followed a week later with a pledge of £5 million support from the Government towards the redevelopment costs.

Bristol needs a world class venue and therefore redevelopment of the concert hall is vital
Ed Vaizey MP

Minister for Culture, Ed Vaizey said: “I was delighted to tour Bristol’s wonderful Colston Hall and see first-hand the transformation programme taking shape at such a historical and important cultural venue in Bristol. Bristol needs a world class venue and therefore redevelopment of the concert hall is vital. The Government has backed this redevelopment project with an announcement of £5 million towards the refurbishment work which will no doubt enhance the venue’s reputation even further and ensure it continues to attract first class live music and entertainment.”

Louise Mitchell, Chief Executive of Bristol Music Trust, said: “We are extremely grateful for the support that Mr Vaizey has already shown us and for the £5 million pledged towards the transformation in the last Parliament. We were thrilled to welcome him to the Hall today and show him first-hand what we are setting out to achieve with our transformation campaign.

We are extremely grateful for the support that Mr Vaizey has already shown us and for the £5 million pledged towards the transformation in the last ParliamenLouise Mitchell – CEO Bristol Music Trustt

“It was a fantastic opportunity to update the Minister on the work of Bristol Plays Music, which provides an education programme that is setting the standard nationally. We are leading the programme for the West of England to ensure that music education reaches into all communities, to those hard to reach and socially excluded groups, as well as those with special educational needs and disabilities. Through our transformation programme, we are aiming to become a national centre for diversity and accessibility.
“We originally asked the Government to match fund the £10 million from Bristol City Council to enable us to provide a transformed Hall and create a National Centre for Entertainment, Education and Enterprise and we will continue to campaign for £5 million from Central Government to achieve this.”

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