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By Michael Brown

Senior Staff Writer

24 June 2020

| | 2 min read


Cultural sector workers urged to say what help they need

Workers in the culture sector are being urged to set out what help they need as a result of the coronavirus pandemic

A red theatre-style curtain with the text Culture will play a key role in helping our city recover

The industry supports thousands of jobs in the North East, including more than 4,000 freelancers, with Newcastle City Council and partners seeking to build a detailed picture of the impact of the virus on them.

'Culture will play a key role in helping our city recover'

Cllr Ged Bell, cabinet member for employment and culture, said: “Newcastle is a leading cultural destination and we are proud to be the home to a large and vibrant community of world class creative professionals and venues.

“Right now times are exceptionally hard for both, and we are doing all we can to support them.

“We know that culture will play a key role in helping our city to recover from the effects of this pandemic, supporting economic development, public health, and quality of life, and we want to see an environment in which those individuals, businesses and organisations can again flourish.

“For that to happen we need to know precisely what is needed, so that we can tell the Government, and ask them to work with us to get the sector back on its feet.

“That includes providing ongoing Government financial support for venues that will both struggle to reopen due to social distancing then need time to rebuild audiences’ confidence in visiting, and support for creatives to produce the new films, shows and works which are the lifeblood of those places.

“We also want to enable cultural professionals to go back into schools and communities to stimulate creative activity across the city.”

Fill in the survey

The council is running a survey for freelance staff in conjunction with the Newcastle Culture Compact, the North East Culture Partnership, the North of Tyne Combined Authority and Tyne and Wear Cultural Freelancers Network.

It asks what practical support people might want or need, what support individuals and organisations have already accessed, what they might be able to provide themselves, and how the authority and its partners might be able to help more.

To fill in the survey – before Friday June 26 - visit