BROMSGROVE MP Sajid Javid has called on Worcestershire County Council to fund a new professional fund-raising and marketing officer for a year for Artrix in a bid to secure the venue’s long-term future.
The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport has written to leader Adrian Hardman to see if he will the sanction the authority funding the £30,000-a-year role specifically to put together a long-term funding plan for the popular School Drive venue.
Mr Javid said: “Our Artrix is brilliant and there should be no doubt about its future.
“Bromsgrove Council has given terrific support for the development of the Artrix over the last ten years to the tune of £1.2 million.
“Let’s not forget that this, plus the dedicated work of staff and volunteers, is what helped get the Artrix off the ground and growing into the fantastic community resource we have today.
“Now the original funding contract has come to the end of its term, we need to look at how we best support our Artrix into its next decade, so that it can stand stronger on its own feet.”
He added it was great the district council would be providing £60,000-a-year to support Artrix, but said, to top the cash up, he and director Ros Robins, who the MP met with the other week to discuss funding, both agreed a professional fund-raising and marketing officer should be employed to ensure there is a long-term funding plan in place.
“I have urged the leader of the county council to look favourably on this sensible and practical idea.
“I have seen it work well elsewhere through my role as Secretary of State, and have full confidence that it would help the Artrix long term”.
The arts centre’s director Ros Robins added: “Artrix is grateful for the support and understanding of our local Bromsgrove MP Sajid Javid in the recent funding negotiations.
“It is always difficult for arts organisations to attract core funding that can be invested in the staff resource needed to support a successful organisation.
“Sajid understands this challenge as do Worcestershire County Council and they have been active supporters of Artrix in the past and we hope will be so again in the future.”
Coun Hardman said he had spoken to Mr Javid and local councillors about how the authority could help Artrix.
He said he welcomed the MP and Artrix director bringing a formal plan to the council and promised to provide a speedy response to the request.