Video: Mid Ulster Mail backing 13p arts funding campaign

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The Mid Ulster Mail, Cookstown District Council and the Burnavon have joined forces to support the 13p campaign for the arts.

Launched amidst cuts that could have far-reaching implications for the development of the arts sector across the region, the petition is calling on government to “make no more cuts to the arts in the 2015 Budget for NI”.

Tony McCance Head of Arts & Cultural Services, Cookstown District Council with Michael McGlade Mid-Ulster Mail Multimedia Content Editor.INMM5114-425

Tony McCance Head of Arts & Cultural Services, Cookstown District Council with Michael McGlade Mid-Ulster Mail Multimedia Content Editor.INMM5114-425

And our editor Michael McGlade has joined the head of arts at Cookstown council, Tony McCance in urging people across the district to support the drive by simply signing a free postcard - available from the Burnavon.

Michael said: “The Arts help people escape the trials of everyday life and in the face of what seems a constant stream of bad news, need protection.”

Since the campaign began actors Stephen Rea, James Nesbitt and Geraldine Hughes (who starred in Gran Torino with) have signed, as well as pianist Barry Douglas.

The Burnavon is one of 40 arts venues across Northern Ireland, where the postcards are available to the public.

Cookstown’s head of arts, Tony McCance said: “A cut to the existing arts budget will have far reaching implications, which will be felt not just within the arts sector but across society as a whole.

“One only needs to look at the economic, social, educational and the health and well-being benefits that the arts bring both directly and indirectly to our communities to understand that.

“An investment of 13p per week, per person is a small price to pay to ensure the future of the arts within Northern Ireland.”

Money received by the Arts Council from government is used to support a diverse range of activities in our communities including events, performances, exhibitions, concerts and workshops.