Arts Council funding gives Museum & Art Gallery green light for new digital project - Warrington Is Happening

Arts Council funding gives Museum & Art Gallery green light for new digital project

Warrington Museum & Art Gallery is embarking on an exciting new project thanks to support from Arts Council England.

The town-centre venue is revamping its website in a bid to increase engagement in a post-lockdown world. 

As ordinary life takes on a different guise and audiences engage with culture in a whole new way, this financial support from Arts Council England will enable Warrington Museum & Art Gallery to ensure the stories from its remarkable collections are not left untold. 

Leah Biddle, cultural manager of Culture Warrington – the charity that runs Warrington Museum & Art Gallery, said: “The effects of coronavirus have taken a huge toll on our industry and have made us reassess how we connect with our audiences. 

“Home to ancient artefacts from across the globe, extraordinary tales and pioneering art, Warrington Museum & Art Gallery has captured the imagination of people at home and around the world and we’re delighted that our visitors will soon be able to engage with our collections wherever they may be.”

This new digital platform opens the door to a higher level of accessibility as the museum’s collections head online with in-depth information that offers a full and comprehensive visitor experience, as well as high-quality arts and culture through our virtual galleries. 

Hoping the new platform will re-engage past visitors and reach out to new ones, Leah said: “Culture Warrington’s venues are highly significant within the town and are some people’s only portal to arts and culture – a lifeline for many. 

“An improved digital platform will allow the community to remotely access high-quality content in the safety of their own homes; reducing social isolation and improving mental well-being, whilst widening our reach outside of the immediate Warrington area.

“Warrington Museum & Art Gallery already receives requests for information on our quirky collections from overseas and our fantastic new platform is the perfect tool for developing that interest.”

In addition to bringing people across the world closer to the museum’s collections, the updated website will also bring new opportunities for local artists and organisations. 

Leah said: “As well as preserving Warrington’s past, we are highly committed to nurturing its future and we’re thrilled to celebrate local talent in this exciting new way. 

“We’re particularly pleased to announce that we’re marking the launch of this new platform by commissioning five local artists and creatives to develop new works to be presented on the site or within the town centre.”

Developed by digital artist Tom Southworth, work has already begun on the platform and it is expected that visitors will be able to explore its fascinating new content in the coming months. 

The funding will also enable Culture Warrington to refresh the Warrington Arts Festival’s annual open exhibition. 

Working alongside local artist and previous winner Marie Jones, the exhibition will now accept work from a wider range of creatives, including performing arts, film and animation. 

Leah said: “We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Arts Council England for their continued support and helping us to bring these projects into fruition.

“Be sure to follow us on social media to discover more about the launch of this fantastic platform and this year’s Warrington Arts Festival.”

For more information or interview requests, please contact Holly Jones on hjones@culturewarrington.org