In 2017, we were successful in securing funding for an Arts Coordinator for a two-year period, with support from North Ayrshire Council, Creative Scotland, The Robertson Trust, and LEADER. It was a fantastic achievement to raise such funds, and to create a role with optimism and hope at its core, and I was thrilled to secure the role.
Amongst a myriad of planning, programming, consultation and support roles, within the time I was in post I spent time gathering information, reflecting on and assessing the future potential of the arts industry on Arran, questioning, amongst other things; what more can be done to support artists on the island? Why are there not more high-quality performances happening on the island? What barriers are there to engagement in the arts across the community? With 5 months out of post waiting for funding to return, I am now back for a further 12 months and reinvigorated to be a catalyst for change, progression and support where needed.
With a desire to answer and address some of the questions above, we put together another plan and after discussion, North Ayrshire Council and Creative Scotland granted the funding for my role for a further 12 months. Within this time, I have a lot I’d like to crack on with, as well as looking at how we might work to fund the role again for a longer period of time beyond next year to provide some much needed sustainability. It is a long-understood truth that sustainability in the arts industry is a huge challenge. Having met colleagues who promote and programme arts in rural settings throughout the highlands and islands, I realised quite how lucky we are to have funding for this role, and that has really encouraged me not to waste a single second. I continue to be inspired by those who work so incredibly hard, often for free, to enrich their communities by bringing culture to their doorstep. It is, I think, vital, to quality of life in any environment, and I am committed to continue to do the best I can to support Arran Theatre and Arts Trust, and through it the wider arts community, whilst in post.
Here’s a snapshot of what I’ll be focussing on in the next twelve months, though the following is not exclusive…
Read the rest of my article over on Voice for Arran here