Manchester Culture Awards 2022: who won the prizes at the city’s celebration of the arts

Altogether 16 awards were handed out on the night celebrating the very best of Manchester’s culture.
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The Manchester Culture Awards 2022 have been handed out at a prestigious awards ceremony in the city centre.

Manchester City Council launched the prize-giving night in 2018 to recognise the very best of the city’s lively and successful arts and cultural scene.

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This year a total of 16 awards were handed out, including no fewer than three special recognition accolades for individuals who have made a huge contribution to culture in Manchester.

The judging panel was faced with an impressive indication of just how cultural a city Manchester is with 466 nominations - the highest received in the awards’ history - for them to consider across the different categories.

Here are those who took the gongs home from the Manchester Culture Awards 2022 and what they did to be recognised.

Who won at the Manchester Culture Awards 2022?

As well as the standard categories three Special Recognition awards were handed out to people who have made a massive contribution to the artistic life of Manchester. Author, poet, playwright, and campaigner Lemn Sissay has his words emblazoned on buildings across Manchester and as well as his own literary output he arranges Christmas dinners for young people who have been through the care system and is a patron of The Letterbox Club.

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HOME director Dave Moutrey OBE, who is also a director of culture for the city, was recognised for his work turning the venue between Deansgate and Oxford Road into a key location for contemporary culture in Manchester, while there was a posthumous award to remember and recognise Kate Day, who led Manchester Craft Design Centre for 15 years and was a key figure in the craft sector, helping thousands of makers and arts professionals develop their careers. She died earlier this year following a short illness.

Dave Moutrey, director at HOME, picked up a Special Recognition award. Photo: Mark Waugh Manchester Press PhotographyDave Moutrey, director at HOME, picked up a Special Recognition award. Photo: Mark Waugh Manchester Press Photography
Dave Moutrey, director at HOME, picked up a Special Recognition award. Photo: Mark Waugh Manchester Press Photography

The award for Best Business Partnership went to Barry Bennett and Venture Arts, while HOME took Best Event for HOMEground, an outdoor festival in 2021 at the First Street site which brought live audiences back after lockdown and worked with more than 700 freelance artists after a tough time for them during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Best Exhibition was Cancer Revolution: Science, Innovation and Hope at the Science and Industry Museum, while the Best Performance was When the Birds Land at Manchester International Festival, which welcomed the giant puppet of a young refugee girl Little Amal to Manchester following an epic cross-continent journey.

Little Amal arrives in ManchesterLittle Amal arrives in Manchester
Little Amal arrives in Manchester

Independent Creative of the Year was Sharon Raymond, who works to connect audiences to culture and created a scheme to bring audiences back to the arts after the Covid-19 pandemic. Made in Manchester went to Manchester Young Carers Music Project while Made, which works with young people, was rewarded with the Promotion of Culture and Education award.         

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Roots and Branches, which helps museums to play a role in addressing the climate crisis and social inequality, took home the Promotion of Environmental Sustainability prize, while the award for Promotion of Equality and Social Justice went to Uncertain Futures, which highlights the issues women aged over 50 face in relation to work.

The Edge, which opens up the world of theatre to people with learning disabilities, mental health issues and drug and alcohol dependencies, people who experience homelessness, ex-prisoners, people who are alone and isolated, and victims of neglect, abuse and discrimination, was rewarded with the award for the Promotion of Health and Wellbeing.

Promotion of Talent and Leadership went to Brighter Sound Leadership Programme, while artist, choregrapher and founder of I M Pact collective Yandass Ndlovu was named Young Creative of the Year. The Manchester People’s Culture Award, chosen through a public vote, went to Ed Wellard   who leads Withington Walls which creates community street art in the area.

What has been said about the Manchester Culture Awards 2022?

Coun Luthfur Rahman OBE, deputy leader at Manchester City Council, said: “Let no-one say there isn’t an appetite for the arts and culture in Manchester. The response each year to our culture awards shows we’re a city that positively eats, sleeps, and breathes culture in all its many forms.

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“This year once again they’ve proved what an incredible cultural scene there is here and just how much talent and potential there is.

“We are and always will be a city that champions creativity and the arts. They deliver real social and economic benefits to the whole city and are a massive part of what helps make Manchester the great place it is.”

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