University and theatre join cultural forces

The partnership will help promote schemes such as the Shattering Images theatre company.
The partnership will help promote schemes such as the Shattering Images theatre company.

A cultural partnership between has been officially launched between Lancaster University and The Dukes theatre.

The three year partnership aims to develop arts, education and learning in Lancaster and to enrich the city’s cultural life.

It was officially launched at The Dukes Centre for Creative Learning where several of the partnership schemes have already taken place with young people from Lancaster district, particularly those living in areas of social economic deprivation.

Other activities, entitled the MAKE Project, are due to take place in the coming year.

The university will help to enhance and promote the pioneering work delivered by The Dukes, including the Journeying Together programme, aimed at people with dementia, and Shattering Images theatre company for people with learning needs.

Lancaster University Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Andrew Atherton, said: “We look forward to working with The Dukes to place the arts at the centre of the student experience at Lancaster, linked to the work of the Lancaster Arts Partners who The Dukes and Live at LICA were founder members of in 2009.”

“A vibrant arts scene is vital to the cultural life of our city. This new partnership celebrates 50 years of university support for the arts in Lancaster and Lancashire and has already begun important work in engaging young people from difficult backgrounds.”

The links between Lancaster University and The Dukes go back decades with the theatre being only seven years younger than the university, which is currently celebrating its 50th anniversary.

The Dukes artistic director, Joe Sumsion, said: “Lancaster has an exceptional university and a brilliant theatre and cultural centre.

“If we work together, we can enhance each other’s offer for the good of Lancaster as a whole and make it a more attractive place to study, live and work.”