Festival fund’s 100m could create jobs

A promise of 100m for regional Millennium Festival projects could lead to festival and exhibition design work across the UK.

Culture Secretary Chris Smith announced the creation of the Millennium Festival fund last week. It will consist of 15m each from the Arts Council, the Sports Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund and the National Lottery Charities Board.

The Millennium Commission and the New Millennium Experience Company will each contribute 20m.

Organisations can apply to the fund for backing from the beginning of May, when full details of the type of activities to be supported will be announced. They will include, “sporting events, arts festivals and projects celebrating national, local and regional heritage and will include activities by both the public and voluntary sector”, according to a spokesman.

The promise of more regional cash comes after long criticism of the London-centric nature of the Millennium celebrations at Greenwich.

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