Major New Music Venue Dunard Centre Gets £25million Funding Package

The world-class music centre set to boost Edinburgh’s international reputation for culture, the Dunard Centre, has been confirmed as receiving support of £10 million each from the UK and Scottish governments, and a further £5 million from the City of Edinburgh Council.

The music venue, that was given the green light by Edinburgh’s planning authorities in November, is being funded through substantial philanthropic donations, including the visionary support of £35m from Dunard Fund, and underpinned by £25 million support from the Scottish and UK governments and the City of Edinburgh Council, as part of the City Region Deal. The Royal Bank of Scotland is supporting the project by providing a long-term lease for the land.

Having successfully secured planning permission and this substantial grant towards its £75million budget, the team behind Dunard Centre is now confidently progressing the final design details and preparing to begin work on site. A fundraising campaign to secure the remaining £15m of the project budget is already well underway.

Dunard Centre is set to be Edinburgh’s first purpose-built music and performance venue in over 100 years. A number of studies have highlighted the need to augment the City’s venue base with a world-class hall of this scale and quality, attracting major artists who currently rule out a visit to Scotland’s capital because of a lack of appropriate provision.

The 1,000 capacity Dunard Centre transforms a forgotten site between St Andrew Square and the new St James Quarter into this exciting new destination in which music lovers can come together to experience incredible performances from the very best artists from all genres, with unexpected collaborations and bold programming designed to appeal to audiences of all ages and tastes. The flexible setting will be a home for the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and a key venue for the Edinburgh International Festival, as well as host for other ensembles, choirs, solo musicians, performers and bands.

A café and all-day events schedule will go towards the Centre’s contribution as a cultural hub and showcase venue, with education and community outreach programmes encouraging participation throughout the region.

Executive Director of Impact Scotland, the charity responsible for the construction and operation of the Dunard Centre, Joanna Baker said, “Edinburgh is a diverse and growing city, and it is our strong belief that the Dunard Centre will drive the future of music and culture across the region. In building an iconic piece of 21st century infrastructure we are creating space for a new generation of music making and we are delighted that this is recognised by the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal partners. We thank them for this endorsement and look forward to collaborating with colleagues to ensure that the project inspires artists and communities across the region.”

Irene Brown

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