Cultural Strategy – Culture is Our Plan 2021 – 2031

Something exciting is happening in Bradford District. We are experiencing a cultural renaissance and facing the future with new-found confidence and hope.

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council believes culture is important in everyone’s lives. We believe it can make a sustainable contribution to the prosperity and happiness of everyone in the District and it is vital as we recover from COVID-19 and strive to level up with the rest of the UK.

Culture Is Our Plan was commissioned by the independent Bradford Cultural Place Partnership with funds from Bradford Council and Arts Council England. The Partnership is chaired by Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe and membership includes leaders of the major strategic cultural initiatives in the District alongside representatives of the independent arts, culture and heritage sector. The plan has been co-created by the people of the district and the cultural sector itself and will act as a guide to activity between 2021 and 2031.

We are the fifth biggest local authority in England and, while we are rightly proud of our many famous cultural attractions, we don’t yet have the range of cultural activity a place this size demands.

We have historically underperformed in attracting national investment and our existing arts, culture and heritage organisations lack the power to engage all our diverse communities.

We are determined to change this situation by working in partnership with national agencies and by enabling the independent arts, culture and heritage sector in the district to grow and to realise its full potential.

Culture is our Plan sets out a bold vision in which Bradford will offer a new definition of art, culture and heritage that reimagines our District as a place that is knowingly different and radically alternative. A place to realise new ideas, where creativity is celebrated in every home and on every street corner and where we will prove the positive impact of culture in everyone’s lives.

The plan provides ten ambitions and ten targets for 2031 as well as ten actions to deliver by 2023.

Halfway along our journey we aim to become the UK City of Culture 2025. Winning this designation would put rocket fuel in our tank and accelerate our journey to a better future. But whether we win that accolade or not, Culture Is Our Plan will stand, and will be our guide to a better, more creative, inclusive and successful Bradford District for everyone.

In direct support of the ambitions in the plan we have redesigned Bradford Council’s cultural grants programme.

You can find Culture is our Plan at You can also find versions of the plan as Easy Read and British Sign Language as well as audio versions in English, Punjabi, Urdu and Polish, along with printer friendly downloadable versions.

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