Arts Council England funding announcement

Bristol Old Vic welcomes confirmation of its revenue subsidy and renewed Arts Council investment in Bristol as a cultural hub.

Bristol Old Vic is very pleased to play a continued role in Arts Council England's 2015 - 2018 funding portfolio for the South West. In the last five years the building has been re-opened and the Theatre completely refurbished, with over half a million people attending one of our critically acclaimed shows, alongside a global audience that saw A Midsummer Night's Dream in 2014 on its inaugural international tour.

In the immediate future, the funding allows Bristol Old Vic to invest in two areas:

1. To invest in the creativity of a wide range of artists - from the support we give to emerging talent through the Bristol Ferment - to our biggest shows both in the Theatre and on tour. We do this because we believe that by freeing the imaginations of its artists, a society can see and understand itself better, and can discover more possibilities about its future.

2. To share our work and the creative opportunities that surround it with as many people as possible, particularly young people from disconnected and disadvantaged parts of the city and region, whose lives and education are poorly served in these vital, inspiring and horizon-broadening areas.

We are thrilled to play a continuing leading role in one of the most dynamic cultural cities in the country. We are part way towards breaking ground on a major refurbishment of our Front of House and public spaces. Planning permission has been granted and we are grateful for the support Arts Council England and Bristol City Council have pledged. Completion of this project will lead to the transformation of our business.

With the knowledge of this settlement begins the final phase of Bristol Old Vic's planning for 2015 - 18. Alongside Arts Council funding, we will win new partners and new investors to contribute to the ongoing transformation of our business and the continued ambition of our programme.

On Arts Council England investment in the city

"The Arts Council has correctly identified Bristol as a city with enormous cultural potential, and has brilliantly invested £1m of new money in some of its most dynamic and rapidly growing organisations - notably Spike Island, Colston Hall, St.George's Bristol, Situations and our associate artists, MAYK.

Over the last few years, Bristol has shown that Britain's core cities can connect globally and contribute vitally to the prosperity of the whole country. Cultural vibrancy is now accepted as an economic driver, bringing with it a raft of social and educational benefits.

We should see these increases as an arrow pointing to the enormous opportunity to invest in our regional arts organisations for local authorities and businesses seeking to broaden their local, national and global impact, and the stimulus for a conversation about what we want the impact of public and private cultural investment in the region to be."

Tom Morris, Artistic Director, Bristol Old Vic