Local cultural attractions will benefit from a combined £1.4m boost over the next three years after grants were awarded by the council. 

As previously reported, Cultural Revenue Grants from Dorset Council will see a range of local culture benefit from a total of £486,000 a year for three years.

This will include support for the arts, museums and heritage organisations.

A total of 28 grants were awarded to different institutions across the county serving different principles.

The largest beneficiary of the grants is Dorset Museum and Art Gallery on High West Street in Dorchester.

They were awarded £150,000 - spread over three years.

Claire Dixon, Executive Director of Dorset County Museum, said that the significance of the museum's contribution has been recognised, saying the money is ‘greatly received.’

She said: “The money will help to support our core work and contribute to the delivery of the council strategy in relation to building stronger, healthier communities and driving economic prosperity.

“Specifically, this grant will be directed towards work that ensures the creation of a sustainable museum.

“It will support us as we look to ensure Dorset Museum & Art Gallery can establish a viable position in the coming years by driving footfall growth, managing costs and ensuring we meet our core objectives in relation to collection care, learning and community provision. 

"We remain financially vulnerable and are keen to gain further public support where possible," she added.

Plans for the grant include underpinning costs of exhibitions, meaning that the museum will be able to borrow world class collections to ‘link the stories of Dorset to contemporary issues.’

The money will also go towards supporting core costs that enable education, learning and event activities.

The museum will also look into a new marketing plan that increases their digital presence.  

The significance of our cultural contribution to Dorset is recognised through this grant and this commitment from the Council is critical and gratefully received. 

Dorchester Arts is another beneficiary of the fund, and received a sum of £60,000 broken up into yearly instalments of £20,000.

Mark Tattersall, Artistic Director for Dorchester Arts, said they were ‘delighted’ to be included in the grants which are vital to their operating costs.

He said: “It supports our costs, overheads, salaries. It helps with essential core costs rather than a specific project. We can’t carry on without it.

“We aim to bring great performances to the town and give local people creative opportunities and develop creative talent."

Sandy Hill Arts was one of the new charities that has received funding from the council. Based in Corfe Castle, the arts charity has been looking to help the community when it comes to creative events and education, as well as wellbeing and combatting rural isolation.

Laurel Hart, Artistic Director, said: “We are grateful to the council for recognising Sandy Hill Art’s value in developing the arts in Purbeck and look forward to working with creatives and the wider community over the year ahead.

“This funding is a big step forward for Sandy Hill Arts, helping us to achieve our goals by securing a sustainable employment model that enables us to develop and deliver over the next three years.

“With Dorset Council’s financial backing, we’re excited to develop more innovative and inspiring creative experiences and opportunities for people of all ages and needs in Purbeck,” she added.

The full list of successful organisations receiving grants:

Activate, Artsreach, B-Side, Bridport Arts Centre, Dorset Visual Arts, the Marine Theatre, Mowlem Theatre, Shaftesbury Arts Centre, Bank of Dreams and Nightmares, The Charmouth Heritage Coast Centre, the Walford Mill and the West Bay Discovery Centre are all to receive funds under the arts and heritage organisations.

Blandford Fashion Museum, Blandford Forum Museum, Bridport Museum, the Keep Military Museum, Lyme Regis Philpot Museum Trust, Museum of East Dorset, Nothe Fort, Portland Museum, Sturminster Newton Heritage Trust, Swanage Museum and Weymouth Museum Trust are the accredited museums that have been selected.