The awards celebrate the unsung heroes of Local Authorities who are championing the arts, often within a climate of severe financial challenges.
Nominations were received from across the UK for each of the four award categories: Best Arts Initiative; Best Arts Project – Community Cohesion; Best Arts Project – Arts, Health and Wellbeing; Best Arts Champion; and Local Authority or Cultural Trust Worker Best Arts Champion – Councillor.
The shortlist was judged by representatives from some of this year’s partners in the awards: Culture Counts, Local Government Association, Wales Council for Voluntary Action, National Campaign for the Arts, UK Theatre and Voluntary Arts Wales.
Our Chair, Samuel West, said:
“What a shortlist. We were delighted to receive so many nominations from across the UK, and we’d like to thank our partners this year for working so hard to make this happen. The breadth of projects and people nominated show that the arts are well-rooted in our communities, despite increasingly difficult times for local authority funding. I am so happy that Hearts For The Arts is able to celebrate the creativity, ingenuity and tenacity of those on this year’s shortlists.”
And the shortlists are…
- Best Arts Initiative
- Best Arts Project – Community Cohesion
- Best Arts Project – Arts, Health and Wellbeing
- Best Arts Champion – Local Authority or Cultural Trust Worker
- Best Arts Champion – Councillor
The winners of the Hearts For The Arts Awards 2020 will be announced on Valentine’s Day, 14 February. The winners will be selected from the shortlist by a panel of key arts industry experts and practitioners, including:
- Susie Dent: lexicographer, etymologist, host of Countdown’s ‘Dictionary Corner’
- Gary Kemp: actor, musician, songwriter, founder member of Spandau Ballet
- Julie Hesmondhalgh: actor, activist
- Alom Shaha: Physics teacher, dad, author of Mr Shaha’s Recipes for Wonder
- Errollyn Wallen CBE: composer
- Kirstie Wilson: Kirklees Council, winner 2019 Hearts for the Arts Best Local Authority Arts Champion – Officer
- Samuel West: actor, director, Chair of the National Campaign for the Arts