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Rebecca Wayman

New £80m programme set to enhance UK's creative industries

Creative industry clusters across several UK cities are to bring creative hubs together with researchers and businesses through a new £80m programme.

The eight cities are Bristol, Leeds, London, York, Cardiff, Belfast, Dundee and Edinburgh.

Aardman, Burberry, Sony and the British Fashion Company are some of the brands involved in the programme.

Led by the Arts and Humanities Research Council within UKRI, the £80m programme comprises nine creative clusters across eight UK cities. It also includes a new Policy and Evidence Centre, led by Nesta in partnership with 10 universities.

Business secretary, Greg Clark said: “The creative industries are a fantastic British success story creating millions of jobs and business opportunities across the country.

“The sector currently contributes £92bn a year to our economy and through our modern Industrial Strategy we are investing further to enable the sector to keep on growing and bringing the benefits to all corners of the UK.”

This investment, through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, offers support to the UK’s globally important creative industries - which are already worth over £92bn to the UK economy and export an estimated £46bn in goods and services each year.

The aim is to create jobs and drive the creation of companies, products and experiences that can be marketed around the world.

Professor Andrew Thompson, executive chair of the Arts and Humanities Research Council, added: “Combining world-class arts and humanities researchers with our globally renowned creative industries will underpin growth in this vibrant and rapidly expanding sector within the UK economy.

“These pioneering partnerships between industry and universities are providing a huge vote of confidence for a sector that is vital to the future prosperity of the UK.”

A new Policy and Evidence Centre has also been established that will address gaps in the evidence base on the national economic strength of the UK’s creative industries.

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