Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Cornwall - capital of culture?

The Council is considering putting forward a bid to become the European Region of Culture in 2014 as well as UK City of Culture in 2013 and to host the European-wide Manifesta event in 2012 as part of the Cultural Olympiad.

All of this is a very ambitious programme but it could have huge benefits. For a sizeable investment, there could be 5000 jobs created, 3000 new students at university in Cornwall and lasting cultural legacy.

But none of this is guaranteed.

I think it is right that we spend a small amount to see whether it is really possible, but I think we need to see a compelling business case for spending large amounts of money on a bid now when other services are under threat. There's nothing wrong with being ambitious and jobs created by such a programme would be a great reward. But we shouldn't be wasting money if we are not going to have a decent chance of pulling it off.

We also need to make sure that any event is really accessible to half a million Cornish residents and we need to have events across the County, not just in Truro. I was gratified that officers are determined on this point and have pointed to a focus on the East of the County (including Lanson?)

The crucial point will come in December when we see the business plan. But in the meantime, anyone with any ideas on whether or not it is a good idea (and, if so, how to make it work) - please get in touch or leave a comment.

No comments: