Manchester arts organisations welcome back audiences with new campaign

The #HereForCultureMCR collaborative campaign features more than 20 Manchester-based arts organisations

Arts organisations from across Manchester have come together to launch a major joint campaign that aims to encourage audiences from all walks of life to return to their venues and embrace the city’s rich cultural offer.

After an incredibly challenging year for the cultural sector globally, and a slow start to 2021, a consortium of Manchester arts organisations are working together on a new campaign that has launched this week.

Arts organisations involved in the #HereforCultureMCR campaign include the Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art, Chetham’s Library, Contact, HOME, Hope Mill Theatre, The Lowry, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester Camerata, Manchester Independents, Manchester International Festival, Manchester Libraries, Manchester Museum, Music Venues Trust, National Football Museum, Palace and Opera House Theatres, People’s History Museum, Royal Northern College of Music, Royal Exchange Theatre, Science and Industry Museum, The Stoller Hall, The Whitworth and Z-arts.

The campaign, which is supported with funding from the UK Government’s Culture Recovery Fund, aims to showcase that culture is the beating heart of Manchester; inspire confidence that venues are safe, welcoming and open to everyone; and remind people that a cultural experience can have a transformative effect on health and wellbeing.

The campaign has launched just over 200 days after many venues closed their doors when the UK’s second lockdown came into effect in November.

It will run throughout the summer and into autumn, aiming to inspire audiences from all walks of life across Greater Manchester to make the most of the cultural offering available on their doorsteps. 

“It’s been a long road to get here, but from today cultural venues across Manchester begin to reopen and they couldn’t be more ready or more excited to welcome back audiences,” said Dave Moutrey, director of culture at Manchester City Council.

“This new joint campaign is backed by some wonderful organisations and its message is very clear: come visit our venues and embrace what’s on offer.

“Whether you want to keep the kids busy throughout the holidays, have a shared night out with friends, or just enjoy a day of solo reflection; immersion in culture has been proven to help improve mental health and our arts venues and organisations are returning a brilliant selection of shows, exhibitions and events, with something for everyone.”

The campaign is supported by Arts Council England, Creative Tourist, Oxford Road Corridor, Manchester City Council, NHS, Network Rail, and has received valuable support from Transport for Greater Manchester who will significantly amplify the campaign with access to advertising assets across their network.

“Last month when we moved to Step Two of the Government’s roadmap, it was a big moment for operators in our retail and hospitality sectors who were given a chance to reopen and welcome people back safely; however, that same opportunity was held back for museums, galleries and theatres, meaning many venues have gone over 200 days without audiences,” said Sheona Southern, managing director at Marketing Manchester.

“That changes today and it’s fantastic to see so many venues working together to celebrate the value of cultural experiences in Manchester.

“It’s a fun and inspiring campaign and we’re proud to be hosting some amazing content on and promoting our strong cultural offer.” 


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