Representation in United Kingdom

Culture

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European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018
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In 2018 the EU will celebrate the European Year of Cultural Heritage (EYCH). The year will be marked by events and initiatives across Europe to encourage people to explore and debate Europe's rich and diverse cultural heritage; celebrate, understand and protect its unique value and reflect on the place that cultural heritage occupies in European citizens' lives. A consortium of UK cultural heritage organisations will be coordinating UK events to include more of a European dimension to familiar programmes such as Heritage Open Days, but also activities specially promoting the 2018 EYCH.

23/08/2017

Cultural heritage is present everywhere, from buildings in European towns and cities to natural landscapes and archaeological sites, literature, art and even food. It also helps people understand their past and get a sense of their future.

During the year, the European Commission will focus debate on how cultural heritage helps to build stronger societies, creates jobs and prosperity, whilst highlighting its importance for EU relations with the rest of the world and what can be done to protect it.

From December 2017, the Commission will publish a newsletter every two months. Subscribe here.

The Year's hashtag is #EuropeforCulture

One of the partners of the Year is Europa Nostra. Its prestigious EU prize for cultural heritage/Europa Nostra Awards has been awarded to UK institutions and individuals many times since its launch in 2002. Supported by the Creative Europe programme, the awards celebrate and promote best practices in heritage conservation, research, management, the work of volunteers, education and communication. In 2017 Cromford Mills in Derbyshire and SAMPHIRE – a maritime heritage project in Western Scotland won the award. Previous UK winners include: the conservation of Abbotsford, the historic country house and former residence of the historical novelist and poet Sir Walter Scott, and the restoration of Strawberry Hill and King's Cross station.

Applications for the 2018 edition of the awards can be submitted until 1 October 2017 through the dedicated website.


Background

The idea for a European Year of Cultural Heritage was first raised by EU ministers in 2014 and two years later the initiative received strong backing from MEPs.

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Film

EU-funded European co-production "The Square" (Sweden, Germany, France, Denmark) by Ruben Östlund won the Cannes film festival's prestigious Palme d'Or earlier this week. This is the third year in a row that an EU-funded movie receives the Palme d'Or. In total, 20 EU-funded movies were screening across the programme's different strands.

01/06/2017

"The Square" tells the story of a father respected for his human values and the quality of his work in a Swedish contemporary art museum, but whose principles are shaken by a profound existential crisis. The movie received €47.000 (£40.000) of EU funding for its distribution across Europe.

This year, as so often before, one of the successful EU-funded films screened at Cannes had significant British involvement. EU-funded co-production “The Killing of a Sacred Deer” by Yorgos Lanthimos (Ireland, UK, Greece) received the prize for the Best Screenplay. It was supported in its early stages of development with €58,000 (£49,000), and at the distribution stage with an additional €179,000 (£151,000).

Vice-President Andrus Ansip, responsible for the Digital Single Market, said: "My warmest congratulations to the winners. It is once again a great success for the European film industry and the MEDIA programme. We will continue our efforts to support the circulation and promotion of European films across our continent and help European cinema make the most of the digital age."

The funding stems from the EU's Creative Europe programme which helps support the audiovisual sector during a time of digital transformation. This MEDIA sub-programme funds initiatives that can generate a real impact across Europe, including individual works, initiatives that promote new skills and promote and facilitate international cooperation. The initiative helps distribute films and television productions across the EU, widening access to them and increasing audiences. This helps movies – frequently British ones – which are successful nationally to become successful across Europe.

In the past, movies such as The King's Speech, Pride, Two Faces of January and The Iron Lady have also been supported by the MEDIA programme.

MEDIA invested £55.3 million in the United Kingdom between 2007 and 2015.

In 2015, 67 UK films had their cinema releases supported across Europe with €4.7 million (£3.4m), including €600,000 (£506,520) for comedy drama Florence Fosters Jenkins and €400,000 (£337,680) for Paddington.

On average some 60-70 UK films receive over €6 million (£5.1m) a year to support their cinema distribution in Europe (outside of the UK).

Overall, the EU has invested £1.9 billion in the past 25 years in the audiovisual industry. Over £640 million has been earmarked to support the competitiveness and the diversity of the industry for 2014-2020. It is estimated that for every €1 (0.8p) invested in the Europa Cinemas network, an estimated €13 (£11) is generated through additional audience for the audiovisual sector.

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Sunjeev Sahota

British author Sunjeev Sahota is one of the winners in the 2017 EU prize for literature (EUPL) for his novel The Year of the Runaways. The annual competition recognises outstanding new and emerging literary European talents and helps lesser known EU authors benefit from increased international visibility and cross-border promotion.

21/04/2017

The Year of the Runaways is about illegal immigration to the UK, the stories of different families who struggle to build a new life in a new country. It is Sanjeev's second novel and in 2016 was awarded the Encore award for the most outstanding second novel of the year, as well as the South Bank Sky Arts Award for Literature. The Derbyshire born novelist's first book was Ours are the Streets.

Tibor Navracsics, EU Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport said: "With the European Union Prize for Literature we shine the spotlight on emerging literary talents from all over Europe. We recognise the importance of the European book sector and help authors, publishers, translators and booksellers reach new readers across borders and offer readers more choice. I extend my warmest congratulations to all this year's prize winners."

Commissioner Navracsics, high-level representatives of the European Parliament and of the Maltese Council Presidency of the EU will present the awards at a ceremony in Brussels on 23 May.

The EUPL was launched by the European Commission in 2009 and is funded through its Creative Europe programme aimed at the cultural and creative sectors.

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Cromford mills

Cromford Mills in Derbyshire and SAMPHIRE – a maritime heritage project in Western Scotland are among the 29 winners of the prestigious European Union prize for cultural heritage/Europa Nostra Awards.

10/04/2017

Each winner will receive €10.000 (£8.618) at an awards ceremony that will be held in Turku, Finland on 15 May.

Cromford Mills is a large complex of industrial mills set in the Derwent Valley in Derbyshire, a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Arkwright Society, a small voluntary organisation, bought Building 17 of the complex and secured substantial funds from the Heritage Lottery Fund and the European Regional Development Fund to redevelop this Grade I listed site. It turned it into a gateway to the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site and a centre for creative industries on the upper floors. The building, the largest of those in the complex, was in a poor state due to lack of maintenance.

SAMPHIRE – Scottish Atlantic Maritime Past: Heritage, Investigation, Research & Education – investigated how community engagement in West Scottish coastal communities could increase understanding of archaeological sites off the Scottish coast. The team's unique approach has fostered dialogue between professional maritime archaeologists and local community members including divers, fishermen, historians and others with knowledge of the seafloor in their area. In the period since the project began three years ago, over 100 new sites have been revealed and recorded.

Everyone can now vote online for the Public Choice Award and rally support for the winning project(s) from their own or another European country. During the awards ceremony, the Public Choice Award winner will be announced.

Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport said: "I congratulate all the winners. Their achievements demonstrate once again how engaged many Europeans are in protecting and safeguarding their cultural heritage. Their projects highlight the significant role of cultural heritage in our lives and our society. Especially today, with Europe facing many big societal challenges, culture is vital in helping us to raise awareness of our common history and values and to foster tolerance, mutual understanding and social inclusion.”

Launched in 2002, the awards celebrate and promote best practices in heritage conservation, research, management, the work of volunteers, education and communication. It is supported by the Creative Europe programme.

The work of UK institutions and individuals in preserving and restoring cultural heritage has been recognised by the awards many times in the past fourteen years. Previous winners include: the conservation of Abbotsford, the historic country house and former residence of the historical novelist and poet Sir Walter Scott, and the restoration of Strawberry Hill and King's Cross station.

Applications for the 2018 edition of the awards can be submitted from 15 May to 1 October 2017 through the dedicated website.

Last year's UK winners

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