Swindon is included in 11 ‘priority places’ in the South West by Arts Council England (ACE) in a move likely to boost hopes for developing the new Cultural Quarter.

ACE will now work with Swindon Borough Council and stakeholders in arts and culture locally to develop opportunities for investment, both from the Arts Council itself and other partners.

The borough council has a vision to build a 1,200-seat theatre, new dance studio, media and arts production centre and art pavilion to display the town’s art collection.

Cllr David Renard, leader of Swindon Borough Council, said: “We have bold and ambitious plans to create an £80m Cultural Quarter in the heart of our town centre and we look forward to working even more closely with the Arts Council so they can lend their considerable expertise in helping us deliver this exciting project.

“This is a major achievement for Swindon and will really put our plans in the spotlight and help us improve our chances of attracting significant funding to support our arts and cultural activity.”

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