Throughout history, the City of London has been a place where commerce and creativity have thrived side by side. As well as being one of the world’s oldest and most important trading hubs, over centuries the Square Mile has fostered the long-term growth of arts and crafts, learning, public entertainment, green spaces, marketplaces, fairs, and pageantry.
The City today has the most vibrant ecology of cultural organisations, creative businesses and practitioners anywhere in the UK. We may be a global city but our cultural organisations are also grounded in a strong sense of place and want to serve the diverse people of the city they inhabit. Our definition of culture is broad and inclusive; it exists in both the buildings and heritage of our great institutions as well as our streets and the informal cultural spaces in between. It is for everyone, not just a narrow elite, and is a powerful driver of social mobility.
The City has a unique combination of roles:
- A major investor in an extraordinary cluster of diverse cultural organisations with considerable profile, reach and influence in London, the UK and abroad.
- A convening power that brings together cultural partners in the City with other stakeholders to achieve personal, social and economic impact – being greater than the sum of our parts.
- A landowner and planning body which can embed creativity into the urban fabric and act as a beacon of place-based regeneration.
- A long term custodian of heritage but also a facilitator of innovation, creative talent and new entrepreneurial ideas.
- An independent voice speaking about the role of culture at regional, national and international levels.