After a fantastic campaign, involving organisations, businesses and communities across the City, the announcement came live on the BBC’s One Show that Coventry had pipped Swansea, Stoke-on-Trent, Sunderland and the town of Paisley to the post in the race to become UK City of Culture in 2021!


Heart of England Community Foundation donated £25,000 to support community engagement with Coventry 2021, and we were thrilled to hear that the 2021 team had secured the prestigious title for the City. We can’t wait to see the benefits that this will have in the city and its communities!

The Foundation awarded three grants this year to support the Coventry City of Culture Trust.

We awarded £10,000 to Talking Birds Theatre Company to fund a touring cart, which travelled across the city, engaging communities with the bid, providing a pop-up pavilion, community forum or creative workshop space in local neighbourhoods.

We awarded £10,000 to Positive Youth Foundation who used the funding to produce the fantastic Changing Trax concert. The event enabled a team of young people from Coventry the opportunity to create their own musical extravaganza working with a professional orchestra from Armonico Consort to host a stunning centerpiece for the 2021 bid at Warwick Arts Centre.

Theatre Absolute received £5,000 to deliver the first Shop Front Festival in the UK. The festival, to be held in March 2018, will give a platform to emerging artists in the city and help give young people as well as those who are disadvantaged or unemployed, access to the arts.

On the Shop Front Festival Julia Negus, Writer and Producer, said:

“It is incredibly important that we nurture and support the next generation of theatre makers and artists in Coventry and across the wider region, and this award will fund new ideas to be developed and showcased over the festival period.

“People will be able to take a trail through the city and see public spaces come alive with shows and activities for all age groups.”

Tina Costello, Foundation Chief Executive, said:

“We’re so pleased that Coventry’s City of Culture bid was successful after all the hard work local organisations and individuals have put into the campaign.

“We’ve already seen the great benefits of two of the grants and I am really looking forward to the Shop Front Festival next year.”

To find out more about the Coventry becoming the UK City of Culture 2021 visit:

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