South Tyneside theatre celebrates £400,000 boost

Customs House director Ray Spencer
Customs House director Ray Spencer

Theatre bosses in South Tyneside are delighted with a vote of confidence - and £400,000 in funding - from a national arts group.

The Customs House, in Mill Dam, South Shields, has secured four years of funding from The Arts Council England (ACE) after being named as one of 831 National Portfolio Organisations (NPO) to share in £409m of Grant in Aid and National Lottery funding.

The Customs House, which has held NPO status since it was introduced in 2012, will receive £100,678 a year for four years from April 2018, totalling £402,712.

Executive director, Ray Spencer MBE, said: “We’re delighted to have maintained our NPO status. People across South Tyneside can continue to enjoy great arts and entertainment at The Customs House.

“Over the next few weeks and months we will shape a new offer for The Customs House that reflects the level of support given by Arts Council England.

“It is clear they have recognised the continued support given by South Tyneside Council and have maintained their contribution.”

The Customs House remains the only NPO in South Tyneside and one of 48 regionally.

Each application was assessed against five key goals as outlined by ACE in its 10-year strategy, including excellence, diversity and skills and children and young people.

The Customs House’s work with children and young people was highlighted as “outstanding” and its ability to give everyone the opportunity to experience and be inspired by the arts was described as “strong”.