Royal Pavilion & Museums Trust to benefit from the Culture Recovery Fund

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Press Release 2 April 2021

Royal Pavilion & Museums Trust to receive £370,000 from second round of the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund

  • RPMT among more than 2,700 recipients to benefit from the latest round of awards from the £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund
  • This award will enable the Royal Pavilion and our museums to re-open after lockdown welcoming back visitors.

RPMT in Brighton & Hove has received a grant of £370,000 from the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund to help the organisation recover and reopen.

More than £300 million has been awarded to thousands of cultural organisations across the country including RPMT in the latest round of support from the Culture Recovery Fund, the Culture Secretary announced today.

RPMT CEO Hedley Swain said:

“This will make a major difference to our ability to re-open venues and do all we can to welcome as many visitors as possible in 2021.

“We are looking forward to welcoming visitors back safely and to continue to provide wonderful museum services for the people of Brighton & Hove and beyond.

“The Royal Pavilion & Museums Trust are incredibly grateful to Arts Council England, DCMS and Secretary of State Oliver Dowden for this vital grant.

The grant will help support the charitable trust as they reopen after the coronavirus pandemic. The lockdowns have severely affected the organisation which will still face a very difficult year financially in 2021.

The trust plans to reopen the Royal Pavilion and the four other venues with a range of cultural activities to attract the many visitors expected to flock to the city this summer.

This will include the opportunity to see A Princes Treasure at the Royal Pavilion which reopens on Monday 17 May with spectacular items on loan from Her Majesty the Queen in their original setting. The exhibition has been extended until January 2022.

The hugely popular photographic show of David Bowie – Rock n Roll with Me: Bowie/ MacCormack 1973 – 76 has also been extended until January 2022. This show sold out during the short window when the museum could open in the autumn and is expected to be hugely popular this summer. Tickets go on sale on Wednesday 9 April and the museum reopens on Tuesday 18 May.

Preston Manor will reopen on Friday 28 May with new family trails to provide entertainment for local residents during the school holidays and for tourists, many who are expected to visit from the UK this year.

Over £800 million in grants and loans has already been awarded to support almost 3,800 cinemas, performance venues, museums, heritage sites and other cultural organisations dealing with the immediate challenges of the coronavirus pandemic.

The second round of awards made today will help organisations to look ahead to the spring and summer and plan for reopening and recovery. After months of closures and cancellations to contain the virus and save lives, this funding will be a much needed helping hand for organisations transitioning back to normal in the months ahead.

Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, said:

“Our record breaking Culture Recovery Fund has already helped thousands of culture and heritage organisations across the country survive the biggest crisis they’ve ever faced.

Now we’re staying by their side as they prepare to welcome the public back through their doors – helping our cultural gems plan for reopening and thrive in the better times ahead.”

RPMT Chair of Trustees, Michael Bedingfield, said:

“Culture is an essential part of the Brighton & Hove economy and will be essential to its recovery after such a difficult year. As an organisation we want to play our full part to attract visitors back to our wonderful city and to enjoy all it has to offer. Our fantastic museums and the world-famous Royal Pavilion are great attractions for local residents and people from all over the UK and the world.

“However 2021 will continue to be very difficult and unpredictable for our organisation.  We will continue to need lots of support from our stakeholders, supporters and audiences. This could be visiting one or all of our venues when they reopen, visiting our fantastic Royal Pavilion shop or donating to our charitable fund.”

Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair, Arts Council England, said:

“Investing in a thriving cultural sector at the heart of communities is a vital part of helping the whole country to recover from the pandemic. These grants will help to re-open theatres, concert halls, and museums and will give artists and companies the opportunity to begin making new work.

We are grateful to the Government for this support and for recognising the paramount importance of culture to our sense of belonging and identity as individuals and as a society.”

The funding awarded today is from a £400 million pot which was held back last year to ensure the Culture Recovery Fund could continue to help organisations in need as the public health picture changed. The funding has been awarded by Arts Council England, as well as Historic England and National Lottery Heritage Fund and the British Film Institute.

Notes to Editors

Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture. We have set out our strategic vision in Let’s Create that by 2030 we want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences. We invest public money from Government and The National Lottery to help support the sector and to deliver this vision.

Following the Covid-19 crisis, the Arts Council developed a £160 million Emergency Response Package, with nearly 90% coming from the National Lottery, for organisations and individuals needing support. We are also one of the bodies administering the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund. Find out more at

At the Budget, the Chancellor announced the £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund would be boosted with a further £300 million investment. Details of this third round of funding will be announced soon.

Royal Pavilion & Museums Trust (RPMT) is a charitable trust responsible for the management of the Royal Pavilion & Museum service in Brighton & Hove.

Formed in October 2020, the RPMT will protect and preserve the venues and collections in the museum service while continuing to offer a vibrant and fascinating service to visitors from around the world.

The Trust is funded by Arts Council England, Brighton & Hove City Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund and other charitable organisations and from public donations as well as income from admissions.

RPMT oversees the Royal Pavilion, Brighton Museum & Art Gallery, Preston Manor, Hove Museum & Art Gallery and the Booth Museum of Natural History.

RPMT offers a wide-range of exhibitions, displays and events through the year covering history, art and culture to appeal to all visitors.