Isle of Man News - POSTED Fri 07-07-2017

Value of arts and culture emphasised as strategy is published

by LC

A vibrant cultural scene boosts people’s sense of identity, assists wellbeing and contributes to the Island’s economy and international reputation.

That is the comment from two bodies that have created a joint national development strategy for culture and the arts.

Entitled ‘Arts, Culture and Creativity for Everyone’, it aims to:

• Inspire people of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy our culture and the arts
• Invest in the Island’s creative communities so that they are successful and sustainable
• Promote our unique Manx culture and distinctiveness as central to the Island’s image,
nationally and internationally
• Champion the arts and culture as fundamental to our wellbeing and sense of place
• Develop knowledge, skills and understanding within our creative and cultural industries
• Inspire and enable people to explore new horizons through innovation, media and technology.

The strategy has been developed by the Isle of Man Arts Council and Culture Vannin after consultation, including a workshop for stakeholders. Its launch was promised in the Programme for Government.

It complements the Government’s Destination Management Plan and Digital Strategy, Manx National Heritage’s plan for the way forward and the Island’s UNESCO Biosphere status, among others.

Tynwald will be asked to approve the strategy when it sits this month.

Geoff Corkish MBE MLC, Chairman of the Arts Council, said: ‘Arts, culture and creativity are not “nice to haves”. They have proven benefits for the Island’s reputation, its economy, the health and well-being of its people and their sense of belonging and identity.

‘Creative and cultural expression helps to us to thrive: as individuals, as communities and as a nation.

‘We are setting out a clear and cohesive plan for how we will foster involvement in, and maximise benefits from, the arts.’

Chris Thomas MHK, Chair of Culture Vannin, said: ‘Although distinct bodies with separate roles and identities, the Arts Council and Culture Vannin have come together with others to lay down this ambitious and exciting strategy to place creativity more centre stage in the Island.’

He continued: ‘Arts and culture add to our quality of life and contribute economically. An agreed vision and strategy are substantial positives.’

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