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‘A major cultural and economic force’: Government funding to secure stability of V&A post-coronavirus

To go with story by Scott Milne. V&A is getting ?2 million more a year from the Scottish Government to help secure its future post-covid. Picture shows; Kayleigh Mitchell (21) with son Ryder.. V&A Dundee. Supplied by V&A Dundee Date; Unknown
To go with story by Scott Milne. V&A is getting ?2 million more a year from the Scottish Government to help secure its future post-covid. Picture shows; Kayleigh Mitchell (21) with son Ryder.. V&A Dundee. Supplied by V&A Dundee Date; Unknown

Millions of pounds has been committed to the V&A Dundee to secure its future as the effects of coronavirus are felt on the leisure sector.

Bosses at the museum have said the £2 million Scottish Government cash boost will allow for the V&A to develop into Scotland’s “centre for design” as the extra funding is delivered over the next three years.

The new money will be in addition to the £1 million annual funding already delivered by the Scottish Government.

Like all museums across the country, the V&A was forced to close last year as the coronavirus pandemic swept the nation.

After a restricted reopening over the summer, it was forced to close again as the second wave of infections struck.

Coronavirus in Scotland – track the spread in these charts and maps

The money will allow for a number of new partnerships to be announced later this year aimed at promoting design as one of Scotland’s “greatest resources”.

It is expected the partnerships will build on already existing projects such as:

  • Design for Business, which works with organisations across Scotland to apply design skills to social or business challenges
  • Schools Design Challenge, which helps secondary schools to empower pupils to solve problems affecting their lives
  • Sewing Box for the Future, which sees the museum working with Dundee University to address waste in the fashion industry
  • Work with Alzheimer Scotland to deliver digital activities for people with dementia and their carers
  • Community outreach and skills development, including working with Dundee charity Front Lounge to train young parents for an SQA qualification in textiles

It is hoped the extra money will also help protect jobs at the museum.

A study found the V&A created a £75 million boost to the Scottish economy in its first year.

‘An important part of cultural life’

Culture secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “Creativity and design sit at the heart of Scottish life and play a critical role in the economy, communities and almost everything we do.

“Since opening in 2018, V&A Dundee has become an important part of Scotland’s cultural life and has played a unique role as Scotland’s design museum.”

Fiona Hyslop.

Tim Allan, V&A Dundee chairman, said: “As an incredibly young organisation, V&A Dundee has already proved itself to be a major cultural and economic force, bringing world-class exhibitions to Tayside and providing a massive boost to the regional and national economy.

“V&A Dundee is a catalyst for transformation and this support enables the museum to be at the fore of Dundee and Scotland’s reopening and recovery.

“This new investment reinforces our role as an advocate for the power of design to enrich lives across our nation, as well as sharing historic, contemporary and future Scottish design globally.”

Tim Allan.

The museum will reopen later in 2021 with new exhibition Night Fever: Designing Club Culture.

The show will be the first large-scale examination of the relationship between club culture and design, charting the evolution of nightclubs from the 1960s to the present day.

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