More than £35,000 has been raised to support community venues through arts events held in Dorset.

Touring arts charity Artsreach has confirmed that in the last year 2023- 2024, more than £35,000 has been raised from 136 live events held at rural community venues and village halls in Dorset.

The money raised will go towards organising further events for next year and sustaining rural venues for the future.

Since 1990 Artsreach has been working to provide people living in rural Dorset with access to professional live performances and creative arts projects in rural venues and communities, at affordable and accessible prices.

Its performance programme is delivered in partnership with a network of over 40 volunteer-promoting groups.

Together, the scheme presents over 130 high-quality professional events every year, usually in village halls and often in rurally isolated communities across rural Dorset.

The charity also revealed that 90 per cent of audiences surveyed rated the quality of the performance they saw as excellent. Additionally 42 per cent of audiences surveyed said they had visited a local pub before or after the show, investing in the local community. 

Kerry Bartlett, executive director at Artstreach, said: “Dorset communities raised and retained over £35,000, helping to sustain vital community venues such as village halls.

“We hope that, with the ongoing support of our audiences and volunteers, we can continue to keep Dorset residents entertained for the next thirty years and beyond!”