National Recognition for Touchstones Rochdale

Published on: November 8th 2022

Touchstones Rochdale, managed by Your Trust, has been successful in securing vital recognition and investment from Arts Council England, making the venue a National Portfolio Organisation

Securing NPO status will be central in helping ensure future resilience and further enhancing the town’s vibrant cultural offering

Touchstones Rochdale is one of over 110 cultural venues in the North West to have been recognised in this way by Arts Council England, making the museum and gallery a National Portfolio Organisation (NPO) for the first time in its 20-year history.

The programme, which will be delivered across the next three years until 2026, will help build on Rochdale’s existing, impressive cultural scene, unlocking increased opportunities and contributing to the future resilience of the borough’s arts and culture offer.

Secured via a competitive application process, the investment builds on Touchstones’ ongoing commitment to bringing creative opportunities to the local community and unlocks vital future growth. 

National Portfolio Organisations are chosen for their leadership and progression within their respective fields, with the investment signalling a shared responsibility for protecting and developing arts and culture throughout the UK.

Speaking of the news, Mark Doyle, Head of Arts, Engagement and Heritage at Touchstones Rochdale, said: “We are absolutely delighted to confirm we were successful in our application to become one of Arts Council England’s National Portfolio Organisations. 

“For several years now, we’ve been working closely with our diverse local communities, with co-creation at the heart of much of our creative activities and collections. We have also made substantial progress in increasing our financial and environmental sustainability. 

“The stability and scale of NPO investment  over the next three years will enable us to build on these strong foundations and make a significant and meaningful contribution to Let’s Create.” 

David Gelsthorpe, Chair of the Board of Trustees at Your Trust Rochdale, the charitable trust that operates Touchstones Rochdale, added: “It’s fantastic to see Touchstones has been successful in securing National Portfolio status. The Art Council England’s investment will be central to transforming how we can help the people of the borough access their culture and live their best lives. It’s a great vote of confidence in the amazing work that Touchstones is doing within Rochdale.”