The Sheffield City Region Cultural Partners have appointed independent consultants to look at the economic and social value of culture, arts and heritage in South Yorkshire.
The arts and culture sector is feeling the impact of Covid-19 with museums, theatres and galleries closed.
London and Bristol-based ChamberlainWalker Economics has been commissioned by the City Region’s Cultural Partners to conduct a report into how culture, heritage and the arts contribute to the economic prosperity of the region - including supporting young people, job creation and place attractiveness.
The project is being managed by Great Place Wentworth & Elsecar on behalf of the Cultural Partners at Barnsley Council, Doncaster Council, Rotherham Council and Sheffield City Council.
Rachel Blake, programme manager at Great Place Wentworth & Elsecar, said: “We’ve always known the Sheffield City Region has strong culture and heritage, but the key is how we unlock that potential to deliver economic and wider benefits for the people who live here, as well as visitors to the region.
“This piece of work demonstrates the willingness of the cultural sector across South Yorkshire to work together and is just the first step, with the partners keen to develop the ambition further as a result of the report.”
ChamberlainWalker Economics has worked on several high-profile projects, including the Piece Hall in Halifax which brings millions into Calderdale’s economy each year.
Dan Jarvis, Sheffield City Region Mayor, said: “Our region has a rich culture and a proud heritage. Not only does this make South Yorkshire an excellent place to live, it provides significant economic and social benefits.
“As Mayor, I want to make the most of the region's cultural offer and this report will help inform how we can maximise the benefits to all when it is safe to do so.
“I’ve been pressing government to support our tourism industry from the worst effects of the coronavirus, and I’m taking steps with the tourism industry leaders to support South Yorkshire’s attractions to thrive when business reopens.
“I look forward to seeing the conclusions of the report and working with partners to make our culture, arts and heritage even stronger as we come out of the coronavirus crisis.”
Great Place Wentworth & Elsecar is a cultural programme funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and Arts Council England, which runs until December this year.
Cultural Partners, including museums, galleries and artists, are being encouraged to have their say in a short online survey as part of the report. The survey can be found at: https://bit.ly/2ZfKRAP
The closing date for the survey is 31 May 2020. The findings of the report will be published by the Sheffield City Region Cultural Partners in July 2020.