Airport’s half million pound boost to arts organisations

The Manchester Airports Group (MAG) has announced its arts sponsorship budget for 2010/11 and named the events and organisations it will be allocating a share of its profits to in the forthcoming year – including 16 from the North West of England – taking the total committed under its Arts Sponsorship programme to almost £9million.

MAG is one of the largest arts sponsors in the UK, with its unique sponsorship programme now entering its twenty-second year. It aims to promote art forms to those who would not normally have access to them, create jobs in the process and expanding the cultural life of the nation.

This latest allocation amounts to £575,000 and will support a range of projects from high profile organisations to smaller community initiatives.

The arts organisations that have been successful include the Bridgewater Hall; the 24:7 theatre festival; the Bury Met; Buxton Festival; Halle Orchestra; Library Theatre Company; the Lowry; Manchester International Festival; Wigan Jazz; Tatton Park Biennial; Bolton Octagon; Oldham Coliseum; Royal Exchange Theatre; Manchester Pride and Queer Up North.

Jonathan Bailey, Director of External Affairs for the Manchester Airports Group, said: “It is a very difficult time for arts organisations in the current economic climate, but we have always been committed to enriching culture in the regions where our airports are based and supporting arts organisations as part of our contribution to our local communities. We believe that a thriving theatre and arts scene helps to support inbound tourism and inward investment. In the current climate, we are aware of how difficult it is running these organisations and events but we are proud to play our part in supporting them.”

Another of the beneficiaries will be the Manchester International Festival, which takes place between 30th June and 17th July, and Manchester Airport is again one of the official sponsors, as it was in 2007 and 2009. It is the world‘s first festival of original, new work and special events and is held biennially across Manchester. This year’s festival will include ‘The Life and Death of Marina Abramović’ starring Willem Dafoe while the comedienne Victoria Wood will stage her story of the Manchester Children’s Choir – ‘That Day We Sang’. Snoop Dogg and Björk are among the other commissioned artists at MIF 2011.

Chris Honer, Artistic Director for the Library Theatre Company, which is based in Hulme, Manchester, said: "We are very grateful for the ongoing and valuable support of Manchester Airports Group. Their financial support will help deliver our programme of work, both on-stage, and our extensive community and education outreach work."

The Manchester Airports Group (MAG) is the largest UK-owned airport operator, currently serving a total of 24 million passengers annually at its four airports – Manchester, East Midlands, Humberside and Bournemouth. It also runs a commercial property business called MAG Developments. Manchester Airport is the UK's largest regional airport serving more than 190 destinations worldwide and contributes over £1billion to the North West economy.

For more information please contact the Manchester Airports Group (MAG) press office on 0161 489 2700 or by email

Notes to editor:

  • As owner of East Midlands Airport and Bournemouth Airport, MAG has also committed sponsorship to Spark Children's Arts Festival Leicestershire and the Dorset Music Festival, respectively.


Published on: 29/03/2011 07:00:00