We are all about the arts and culture of Northern Ireland. It’s in our blood and it’s the passion that keeps us writing. For the last 10 years, Culture NI has brought you the latest news, views and events from the Northern Ireland arts and cultural scene. Now The Arts Council of Northern Ireland has cut Culture NI’s core funding. This means that the Culture NI website and social networks will regrettably be forced to close from April 2015. This is going to be a monumental loss to Northern Ireland’s arts and culture scene, many people’s livelihoods are at stake and we need to make voices heard as our amazing, vibrant country is losing funding left right and centre, this affects you. Culturally, economically, people will lose their jobs and well, what’s going to be left? Many of our arts and culture events and organisations have lost their funding, from theatres to music venues to street events and beyond. If you think to the events you have been to recently, they have either lost all funding or part funding.
In April, when Culture NI is sadly shut down, we will lose:
- Culture NI’s unique ‘one-stop-shop’ website, promoting arts and culture in Northern Ireland to 400,000+ users each year
- 500+ arts-related articles, reviews and competitions, written by 50 top contributors, each year.
- A What’s On listings service, with thousands of events across Northern Ireland, and curated events content.
- Culture NI and Culture North West e-newsletters, containing the latest arts news and events, sent to more than 40,000 subscribers each week.
- Social networks with more than 50,000 Facebook fans and Twitter followers, generating 20 million page impressions each year.
- A proven driver of arts attendance, delivering ticket sales and new audiences.
- 5 Culture NI jobs are under threat, as well as loss of earnings to 50 freelance arts journalists and writers.
Culture NI has been at the forefront of promoting our events, our talents, our galleries and our products:
- 67% of users had ‘attended an event’ after visiting the website.
- 46% of users had ‘purchased a ticket’.
- 20% had ‘bought a cultural product e.g. book, album, painting’.
- 62% of users ‘discovered something new about NI’s arts and culture’.
Help save Culture NI by telling the Arts Council of Northern Ireland why you love the website using the form in this link. It will take 1 minute to complete. An email will be automatically sent to the Arts Council and the Department of Culture, Arts & Leisure.
For the full list of the affected people and organisations that have been affected, read this handy PDF.