Gallery plan vital for funding

The Grundy Art Gallery
The Grundy Art Gallery
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A four year business plan has been approved for the Grundy Art Gallery by Blackpool Council.

The move has secured the venue’s future in terms of retaining a £43,000 a year grant from the Arts Council for a contemporary art exhibition programme.

It also secures its museum accreditation status.

Town hall chiefs say the gallery on Queen Street is a vital part of the town’s commitment to culture and the arts.

Carolyn Primett, head of arts at the council, says in a report: “The Grundy is the town’s only art gallery, a cultural asset that was left by the Grundy brothers to the town and the local authority to be responsible custodians.

“It has been open to the people of Blackpool and visitors for over 100 years showing the best art of the day.”

She warns if the Grundy was to lose its museum accreditation status it would “deprive Blackpool residents and visitors access to a professional gallery space offering high quality exhibitions, education and engagement programmes.”

Having accreditation status is also key to attracting new investment.

The Grundy has recently received a positive end of year report for 2016/17 from Arts Council England, highlighting the importance of the gallery to the region, the quality of the programme, the work it does with children and young people (up to 3,000 a year) and in supporting local artists.

The report adds: “A new curator has recently been appointed and brings key skills in partnership working in the arts and business sector, innovative income generation experience and will lead on setting up a charitable arm for the gallery to allow it to access funding from trusts and foundations not available to a local authority.”

Paulette Terry Brien took over in November as the new curator of the Grundy Art Gallery.

Before taking on the role, she was co-founder and co-director of The International 3, a contemporary art gallery based in Salford.