Launch of £245k Arts Challenge Fund

‘Love Living Here through The Arts’, the new Arts Challenge Fund of £245k was launched today by Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Councillor Paul Hamill and Nick Livingstone of Arts Council NI.

Mayor of Antrim ad Newtownabbey, Councillor Paul Hamill, Nick Livingstone, Director of Strategic Developments Arts Council NI, Ethel and Tim Clifford at the launch of ‘Love Living Here through The Arts’, the new Arts Challenge Fund at Mossley Mill.

This exciting new project was jointly funded by Arts Council of Northern Ireland (ACNI) to the tune of £122k and matched with £123k from Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council. This funding will allow us to deliver a number of arts programmes to support the Council’s new Community Plan ‘Love Living Here’

The Mayor, Councillor Paul Hamill remarked “This is a fantastic opportunity for the residents of our Borough to engage with the Arts. This is an inclusive programme available for all ages and abilities. I would encourage everyone to support this project and I look forward to seeing the benefits of this project in the Borough”

The Arts Challenge Fund has five strands which are designed to utilise the power of the arts and creative engagement. These programmes will aim to address some of the most significant challenges facing the Borough and its residents.  The objective is to reach out to a wide range of different groups and those living in every part of the Borough. They include;

  • Village Artist in Residence programme
  • Issue Based Theatre Programme
  • Love Living Here Programme
  • Older Peoples Arts Programme and
  • Community Arts Apprenticeship Programme

Speaking at today’s launch Nick Livingston, Director of Strategic Development ACNI, commented; “We now have the opportunity to see some truly inspiring and challenging work begin in Antrim and Newtownabbey on quite a grand scale. The artists and arts organisations are truly at the heart of the new developments.

“I would like offer congratulations to the Council who have shown tremendous strength of vision and character coming up with not just one but five creative programmes. “

If you would like to know more about how you can get involved, either as an artist on through one of the many programmes, please contact Bernard Clarkson, Arts Services Manager on 028 9034 0202 or email