Who will we focus on?
Culture is for everyone and we’ll ensure that it’s accessible to as many people as possible.
Shropshire has a higher than the national average older population, which offers advantages in terms of skills, expertise and a good volunteer base, but presents longer-term challenges around health and wellbeing. As a largely rural county, access to culture for all can be a challenge in Shropshire, and this will need to be addressed through this strategy. We also need to do more to facilitate younger people’s engagement with culture as audiences, participants, leaders and makers.
We’ll work with Shropshire children and their families, young and older people, public sector and community organisations to make sure that cultural activities are available to everyone.
Cultural diversity will be supported and encouraged. We’ll embrace the ‘creative case for diversity’, ensuring the cultural offer in the county is diverse and inclusive, reflecting a wide range of influences and practices. This will not only help enrich our programmes, but also address challenges and opportunities in audience development, public engagement, workforce and leadership, and collections development in museums. We’ll also work collaboratively to make cultural activities more accessible to people with special needs.
The visitor economy in Shropshire was growing prior to the coronavirus pandemic, and we expect the county to be well placed to benefit from local visitors once restrictions allow. Shropshire is valued for its authentic experiences and off-the-beaten-track vibe, and independent visitors of all ages will be targeted in the future.
We’ll ensure that awareness of Shropshire’s rich vibrant culture grows, and more visitors are attracted from wider catchments. Visitor experiences, products and services will be developed, and we’ll work with arts, creative and heritage businesses to help them innovate, grow and thrive.