Arts and culture in the city

Introducing Culture In Our City, your one stop shop for Arts & Creative Industries information and exchange in Brighton & Hove.

What's on the Culture In Our City website

Whether new to, established or visiting the area, on the Cultureinourcity website you'll find inspiring:

  • resources
  • training
  • creative networks
  • funding
  • other opportunities

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About Brighton & Hove

Brighton & Hove is known internationally as a centre of creativity. We are one of the most dynamic and innovative creative clusters in the UK, at the forefront of advances in artificial intelligence and augmented reality.

We're home to hundreds of artists and creative producers. We host over 60 festivals a year, including the largest annual arts festival in England. Artists and creative people are drawn to live and work in the city because of its fantastic setting between the sea and the South Downs, its much-loved Georgian architecture and heritage, and its liberal and cosmopolitan attitude, epitomised by its diverse day and nightlife.

As well as being home to 35,000 students, the city boasts a strong civil society with over 2,300 third sector organisations and one of the largest populations of freelancers and homeworkers in the UK.

COVID-19 and our creative industries

The impact of COVID-19 on the creative industries in the city has been profound. The sudden loss of income caused by lockdowns has left most of the sector in financial difficulty with many self-employed workers ineligible for government support, or receiving a fraction of their previous income.

As a response to that Brighton & Hove’s cultural and creative sector came together.

In September 2020, the following came together to participate in 17 conversations over 2 weeks.

They included:

  • over 100 creative workers
  • award-winning artists and those just starting out
  • leaders and frontline staff of organisations large and small
  • those freelance and those salaried

With a common purpose, they focussed on how one of the most vital sectors to Brighton & Hove’s economy and reputation might recover from the crisis and find more sustainable and inclusive ways to grow in the future.

The pandemic provided an opportunity to look at the city’s cultural offer and build new ways of working that encourage good growth, inclusion and address historic gaps, inconsistencies and challenges. In restarting the cultural economy, it will be important to build upon the Cultural Framework, not attempt to totally reinvent the city’s approach to culture. The ABCD Cultural Recover Plan is aiming to do just that: rebuilt a better, brighter future that addresses the new and unexpected world we now inhabit.

The ABCD Cultural Recovery Plan

The ABCD Cultural Recovery Plan is a direct response to Covid-19, it’s not an all-encompassing cultural strategy.

If the ideas are implemented well, they will ensure:

  • new jobs and training opportunities will be created for creative workers
  • Brighton & Hove will be recognised as a world-class destination for creatively ambitious work that experiments with all artforms
  • the arts and culture sector will help drive economic recovery of the Tourism and Retail sectors and make a positive contribution to the health & wellbeing of residents and visitors.
  • Brighton & Hove will be a City that has led the way nationally for support of creatives and values their role in placemaking
  • creative workers will not leave the city in the immediate future

ABCD Cultural Recovery Working Groups

Governance Group - Looks after and oversees all the working groups, helping them deliver the city's recovery plan collaboratively.

The Engine Room - Focused on developing existing and identifying gaps in sector business support designed specifically for cultural and creative workers living and working across Greater Brighton.

Enliven - Intends to employ creative and cultural businesses and practitioners to enliven the city centre, boosting the city's vital retail economy and making it a more attractive and rewarding destination to visit.

The Creative Communities - A community-led programme designed to bring culture to all parts of the city through the installation of local event infrastructure alongside event management and programming training and support.

Inclusivity Charter

The ABCD Cultural Recovery Plan follows the Cultural Framework in its commitment to cultural, ethnic and social pluralism in their organisations’ practices, processes and policies. This is expressed through a voluntary Inclusivity Charter, which organisations can adopt.

Find more information about the Inclusivity Charter.

Read The ABCD Cultural Recovery Plan

Find out more and read the plan on the Culture In Our City website.

The Culture In Our City website is administered and funded by the Arts team at Brighton & Hove City Council. It exists to support the sector, champion its strengths and advocate for the central role it plays in the city’s life and economy. This site is designed to support the industry through Covid-19 recovery and to continue to deliver the city's cultural framework and its actions.