Prior to Covid-19, millions enjoyed theatres, museums, galleries and more, however as Covid-19 took hold the Arts sector suffered.
The Arts, Entertainment and Recreation sector saw huge financial impact from COVID19. 34% of businesses reported a 50% drop in revenue (The High Streets Taskforce Professional Research & Data Group, Covid-19 impact report).
Arts Council England (ACE) made an urgent bid to enable them to measure the impact of lockdowns on ACE funded venues across Great Britain.
Time was of the essence as ACE wanted a wider understanding of how art venues and communities were being impacted during the ongoing pandemic.
"We’ve never seen the power of geospatial in this way and we are already considering next steps how mapping can unlock new learnings."Ross Burnett, Senior Manager, Policy – Arts Council England
OS Partner, Landmark Information Group investigated:
- Addressing for more than 4,000 permanent cultural sites funded by ACE
- Adding every attribute each site possesses, including café’s bookshops and educational spaces
Landmark then plotted where ACE funded organisations go on tour – this included an additional 5,000 venues across Great Britain.
With these addresses plotted, the resulting maps then show the ripple effect on communities over time from the effects of Covid-19.
Essential to this project was the OS data set Points of Interest, curated by Landmark to create the resulting interactive maps for ACE.
"To demonstrate the power of geospatial has been so rewarding, and at such speed and in a virtual environment."Rick Crowhurst, Senior Public Sector Manager – Landmark Solutions
This project was completed in just 10 days, an enormous feat managed through collaboration, simplified processes to access data and the urgent need for this information.
The insight which ACE got from this project was not only focussed on COVID-19. They also found that 75% of their funded venues are within a 5-minute walk of a high street, 300 venues and buildings are located in unemployment hotspots. Data was also collected about the additional services offered by arts venues – 25% of ACE funded Arts venues also have a café, bar or bookshop.
ACE will use this data to monitor the change COVID-19 has had on the Arts and their additional services, and to plan for the future.
"An investment in culture is an investment in our high streets…central to the social fabric and civic pride of towns across England…helping to bring our high streets alive, providing jobs and boosting the economy."Dr Darren Henley, Chief Executive – Arts Council England