600 jobs for Wakefield as creative industry gets a £4.4m boost

Wakefield is set to become the creative heart of the North, with a £4.4m boost for the district's cultural and creative industries.

Friday, 18th January 2019, 11:05 am
Updated Friday, 18th January 2019, 12:09 pm
Opportunity: Coun Peter Box outside The Hepworth Gallery.

The investment, announced today, is part of the Cultural Development Fund, a £20m investment into cultural services. It is expected to bring as many as 600 jobs to the area.

The investment will be used to help boost the city’s creative industry, as well as nurturing new talent in areas including gaming, arts and design.

It will also see the creation of a new arts hub in the city centre, to provide a home for established entrepreneurs and new businesses, skills training for students and space for artists.

Councillor Peter Box, leader of Wakefield Council, said: “The funding announced today will help create a dynamic, skilled workforce developing home-grown creative talent.

“We will boost the world renowned creative industry we already have, as well as creating a vibrant, culturally rich environment to attract new business and investment.

“With this funding, we move yet another step closer to Wakefield becoming known as the ‘creative hub’ of the North.”

The district is already home to several cultural attractions, such as Yorkshire Sculpture Park, The Hepworth Wakefield and Production Park.

Peter Murray, executive and founding director of Yorkshire Sculpture Park said: “This is fantastic news for Wakefield, a city that already prides itself on being the birthplace of modern British sculpture.

“This important investment is a reflection of the creative energy felt right across the district and is a real boost for our creative industries.”

Jeremy Wright QC MP, Secretary of State for Digital Culture, Media and Sport said: “With clear plans in place, this funding has the potential to make Wakefield a more interesting place to live, work and visit, attracting further investment and creating jobs.”

Worcester, the Kent Thames Estuary, Grimsby and Plymouth also received funding from the investment.

Wakefield received the largest investment, following a successful bid by Wakefield Council and their partners.