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Taking Part survey reveals arts participation is on the rise

  • Date: 11 May 2012
  • Area: National

More people than ever are participating in the arts, culture and heritage in England, according to the Taking Part survey.

The survey, commissioned by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in partnership with Arts Council England, Sport England and English Heritage looked at arts and heritage participation between January and December 2011.

Key findings from the report are:

  • in 2011, 78 per cent of adults surveyed had engaged in the arts in the last year, a 2 per cent increase on figures from 2005/06
  • nearly half - 48 per cent - of those who took part in the survey in 2011 said they had paid a visit to a gallery or a museum in the last year, a 6 per cent increase on the five years previously (2005/06)
  • for people from Black and minority ethnic groups, the figure has risen by 8 per cent in the same period - to 43 per cent
  • arts engagement increased by 8 per cent between 2009/10 and 2011 for the most deprived 10 per cent of the people surveyed - from 60 per cent to 68 per cent
  • engagement by adults aged 65-74 and 75 plus has increased significantly since 2005/06 - from 71 per cent to 75 per cent for 65-74 year olds and from 58 per cent to 63 per cent for aged 75 and over. However, adults aged 75 and over still have significantly lower arts engagement rates compared to other age groups

Phil Cave, Director of Engagement, Arts Council England said: 'These figures and the increase in the number of people taking part show just how important the arts and culture are to the public - and that they are becoming even more so.'

Engaging audiences is one of the Arts Council priorities for 2011-15. Examples of how we will realise this ambition include our Audience focus fund, and the recently launched Creative people and places fund which aims to support places in England to experiment with radically different approaches to increasing engagement in the arts.

You can read the full Taking Part survey report on the DCMS website.