Arts Derbyshire


Level Centre Offered Arts Council England Investment

Level is delighted to announce that it has retained its National Portfolio Organisation status through Arts Council England and will receive an annual grant of £141,354 from 2023-2026.

Arts Council England is increasing its funding in villages, towns and cities where investment is currently too low. A total of £446 million per annum of investment will bring art, culture, and creativity to more people, in more places, across the country. Level Centre, a contemporary arts centre based in the small Derbyshire village of Rowsley, is one of 990 organisations to receive a share of the funding.

Stuart Allen, Chair of the Level Centre board said “We are absolutely delighted that LEVEL continues as a National Portfolio Organisation. The grant awarded allows us to continue to work with disabled artists and communities through our programme of visual arts and performances to create high quality contemporary work in the heart of Derbyshire.”

The portfolio organisations, including Level, will deliver The Arts Council’s new ‘Let’s Create’ strategy, its most varied and ambitious plan to date designed to make sure that the public has the very best art and culture available to them in their neighbourhoods.

Peter Knott, Area Director for Arts Council England said: “We want creative communities in every corner of the country to have the opportunity to thrive, which is why we’re delighted to be investing in Level Centre over the next three years. It’ll be great to see them continue to connect with communities in rural Derbyshire and develop their Level Makes programme, giving adults with learning disabilities the opportunity to engage with visual and performing arts workshops.”

Arts Council England Chief Executive, Darren Henley, said: “Together, each of the 990 organisations that have been offered funding today will contribute to a portfolio that is rich, varied and truly national. This is our widest ever spread of investment across the country, ensuring that many more people will have access to a wider choice of exceptional art, culture and creative opportunities on their doorsteps. We are in tough times but we must remember creativity brings with it extraordinary dividends, boosting our country’s economic growth, creating jobs, bringing communities closer together, and making us happier as individuals. Everyone deserves to enjoy the benefits it brings, and with this investment, we believe we’ve taken a decisive step towards making that vision a reality.”

Level Centre is a registered charity that relies on the generous support of Arts Council England, trusts and foundations and individual donors to deliver its mission to ‘Celebrate the Art that Difference Makes’. Until recently Level, along with 10 other arts organisations in Derbyshire, received core funding from Derbyshire County Council. DCC have just announced that it is withdrawing 100% of this funding, leaving Level Centre with a £24,924 a year funding gap each year.

Executive Director Kerry Andrews said “We’re delighted to receive a conditional funding offer from Arts Council England. LEVEL celebrates the art that ‘difference’ makes, supporting learning disabled people, disabled creatives and the wider community to experience visual, digital and performing arts. It’s a difficult time for many and we want to make sure that we can continue to provide high quality arts experiences for rural audiences in Derbyshire and beyond working with artistic talent from across the UK. Unfortunately this good news follows the devastating news that Derbyshire County Council are cutting our core recurring grant from the end of this financial year. We now need to find alternative financial support to make sure that we can continue to deliver programmes that support wellbeing, combat loneliness and provide a social lifeline to disabled creatives in a rural community.”

For more information about the Arts Council England 2023-2026 Investment programme visit:

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