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Creativity and Culture for All. Cambridge City Council’s Cultural Strategy (2024-2029)

Meeting: 21/03/2024 - Environment and Community Scrutiny Committee (Item 19)

19 Creativity and Culture for All. Cambridge City Council’s Cultural Strategy (2024-2029) pdf icon PDF 127 KB

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Matter for Decision

The 2019 Cultural Cities Enquiry Report considered how the Council could radically increase the ability to use culture to drive inclusive growth. It stated, ‘The value of culture to our civic life was now indisputable. There was a great opportunity to release reserves of untapped potential in our cities through investment in culture. Culture could help our cities to define a shared vision for the future, to promote innovation and positive change in our businesses and institutions, to equip communities to deal positively with change, and to realise more equitable opportunities for all individuals to succeed.’


The development of a strategy to maximise cultural dividends in Cambridge was a key to realising Cambridge’s cultural potential as it adapts to a period of rapid growth and change.


The Cultural Strategy 2024 -2029 was a new strategy that sets out the Council’s role and commitment to work with partners to deliver a cohesive, coordinated and collaborative approach to managing change as the identity of Cambridge City and the region adapts.


Following approval of the Strategy the documentation would be redesigned to ensure it met all requirements on accessibility and fitted with the wider suite of Council strategies.


Decision of Executive Councillor for Communities

Approved and adopted the Cambridge City Council’s Cultural Strategy (2024 – 2029).


Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.


Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.


Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Culture & Community Manager.


The Culture & Community Manager said the following in response to Members’ questions:

      i.         Officers had been communicating and consulting about the Cultural Strategy with key partners within the city and the region eg Cambridge Arts Network.

    ii.         Large events contributed towards community cohesion in the city. They also attracted people from outside the city. This was an income stream. Officers would work with other organisations so costs could be shared to run events that benefitted city residents and visitors from across the region (so city residents would not subsidise the cost of events that other people used). Officers had worked with commercial organisations for five years.

   iii.         A Culture Infrastructure Strategy (to be drafted) would run alongside the Cultural Strategy to review the infrastructure in place and also what was needed in the city over the next ten to twenty years. Officers were working alongside the Planning Department and South Cambs District Council on the ‘regional draw’ of events to the city and what cultural events South Cambs District Council could provide themselves. Officers also worked with the Arts Council and Combined Authority.

  iv.         Officers were looking at how to measure the impact of culture for the economic and cultural benefit of the city.


The Committee unanimously resolved to endorse the recommendation.


The Executive Councillor approved the recommendation.


Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.