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Lewisham wins London Borough of Culture 2021

Tue 11 February 2020

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, revealed Lewisham as the winner of London Borough of Culture for 2021 at an event on 11 February at City Hall.

Home to Trinity Laban’s Faculty of Dance, the borough will receive £1.35 million of funding to stage an ambitious programme of cultural events and create a legacy to inspire young people.

As winners, Lewisham plan to stage a year-long campaign called Cultural Activism which will encompass:

  • a powerful call to tackle climate change
  • a celebration of Lewisham’s status as a borough of sanctuary
  • a commitment to building an inclusive society
  • a pledge to work together to deliver lasting change

Responding to the announcement on Twitter, Mayor of Lewisham Damien Egan said –

“We did it! I’m delighted we have been awarded Borough of Culture 2021! This is an incredible opportunity for Lewisham Council. Thank you Sadiq Khan and Justine Simons, we can’t wait to get started!”

Now it its second year, The London Borough of Culture forms part of Sadiq Khan’s plans to support the arts in the Capital and is open to all 32 London boroughs.

Waltham Forest was the Mayor’s first ever London Borough of Culture in 2019. Their programme carried with it a profound sense of community ownership involving all 88 schools in the borough, recruiting over 1000 volunteers and achieving challenging targets of 85% of households engaged and 500,000 additional visits to cultural activity. Brent is the London Borough of Culture for 2020 and began its year with a mass participation event with more than 300 local residents and young people performing in front of Wembley Stadium.

Lewisham previously won a £216,000 Cultural Impact Award as part of the inaugural London Borough of Culture competition, which was used to deliver Age Against the Machine in 2019.

With a programme of almost 70 events, this festival of creative aging was designed to spark debate, challenge perceptions, champion older artists and celebrate the positive impact of creativity on our lives as we age.

Trinity Laban hosted the Grand Finale of the radical new arts festival with a day of free pop-up performances, workshops and exhibitions around our award-winning Laban Building in Deptford on Silver Sunday (6 Oct) created by local groups and artists and involving over 150 local residents.

Lewisham will work with organisations in the borough, including Trinity Labanto deliver the year celebration alongside grass roots organisations, artists and local communities. 

For more info, visit Lewisham’s website

Image credit Juno Snowdon