Carlisle venue manager nominated for UK wide arts award

Stephen Dunn
Stephen Dunn

Carlisle arts officer Stephen Dunn has been recognised nationally for the work and effort he has put into The Old Fire Station in Carlisle.

He has worked tirelessly to promote the arts in the city and has now been shortlisted in the Best Local Authority Arts Champion - Officer category in the National Campaign for the Arts awards.

The Old Fire Station was flooded and badly damaged by Storm Desmond in December 2015, just months after opening.

It has now reopened following an extensive refurbishment in which Mr Dunn played a major role.

His citation says: "Stephen was pivotal in leading delivery of that work, and his experience, commitment and enthusiasm inspires others to get involved. He has also developed wide ranging partnerships amongst public and private organisations, the University of Cumbria, third sector organisations, museums, local media and a range of local, national and international artists."

Following the realisation that he had received the award, Stephen said: "It's bonkers, I had no idea!

"We're really pleased here at the Old Fire Station that the venue has been recognised nationally and getting the name out there is super.

"The fact Carlisle has even been mentioned in the long run means something to me. The fact that it's the Old Fire Station being promoted for a positive reason is fantastic.

"Someone at work spotted my name, I don't even know how - but I'm very chuffed!

"I'll happily accept this nomination on behalf of all the team here at the Old Fire Station. It's not just me and my enthusiasm that runs the place. It's a great surprise the team should be really proud.

"The main goal of the Old Fire Station was that we will put on whatever event you want - we're here to promote Carlisle and up their entertainment game so we're a multi-use venue and chuffed to bits with this nomination."

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