Advisory group for arts

An advisory group is to be established to assist the Dunedin City Council with the development of a new arts and culture strategy.

The council approved the development of a new strategy in May 2012 and a council project team has been working with arts and culture collective Transforming Dunedin on a draft for about a year.

It was at the stage where a ''sounding board'' in the form of an advisory group was needed, before the draft was approved by the council and sent out for consultation, council events and community development manager Rebecca Williams said.

The draft strategy was to be ready by April and a consultation period was planned for June and July.

It was hoped the final strategy would be signed off in November.

The development of a strategy follows significant community feedback to the council through its annual planning process several years ago, on the need to set the direction for arts and culture in Dunedin.

The arts and culture strategy was developed in 1997.

The council agreed at its meeting yesterday that Crs Aaron Hawkins, Neville Peat and Jinty MacTavish, two representatives from Transforming Dunedin and one or two other key stakeholders would be members of the arts and culture strategy advisory group.

Several councillors asked Mrs Williams why the project was taking so long and if she was confident it would be completed this year.

She said significant work had been done and she was confident it would be ready.

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