The winners of the 2018 Reading Cultural Awards have been announced.
The Awards, which celebrate the best of Reading’s arts, culture and heritage,
were presented at a glittering celebration at The Olympia Ballroom on 27 June.
The Awards recognise the fantastic events, organisations and artists that have
made Reading such a great place to live, work and do business
over the past 12 months.

Organised by Reading UK, the Reading Cultural Awards champion
the many great organisations and artists that put their creative hearts
and souls into Reading.

Full list of the winners and finalists below

 

 

The judging

We received almost 600 nominations for the 2018 Awards. Thanks to everyone who took the time to nominate their favourite arts, culture or heritage activity of 2017/2018. Our panel of 12 judges assessed the entries and we celebrated the best 38 as the awards' shortlist across 12 categories.

2017/18

The 2018 Awards recognised cultural events that took place in the Greater Reading area between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018.

Awards ceremony

The 2018 Reading Cultural Awards were presented at a glittering awards ceremony at the historic Olympia Ballroom on Wednesday 27 June. Members of the arts and culture community were joined by representatives of Reading businesses and key stakeholders, including Arts Council England and Historic England.

The Winners and Finalists 2017/18

Reading Place of Culture Ambassador Award

An artist or artistic endeavour that has promoted Reading’s talent or Reading as a cultural destination to a wider audience beyond the town.

Winner
Reading Between The Lines theatre company

Finalists
Reading All Steel Percussion Orchestra (RASPO)
Reading Scottish Pipe Band

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Festival of the Year

A festival that engaged a broad community and raised Reading’s profile with high-quality content and a great festival experience.

Winner
Are You Listening Festival

Finalists
Reading Carnival
Reading on Thames festival

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Performance of the Year

Music, theatre, dance… This performance will have caused ripples in Reading and been widely acclaimed. The performance must have taken place in Reading but does not necessarily need to have been made in Reading.

Winner
Schumann at the Station, Aldworth Philharmonic Orchestra

Finalists
Matilda the Empress, Reading Between the Lines
Alby the Penguin Saves Christmas, Reading Rep, Jelly & Reading Libraries
Ben Pedley Memorial Concert

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Celebrating Reading’s Heritage Award

A project or organisation that has raised the profile of Reading’s heritage.

Winner
The Shady Side of Town, Reading Tree Wardens and Two Rivers Press

Finalists
Lillies for Oscar Wilde, Reading Museum, Jelly, Reading Guild of Artists, Two Rivers Press, Haslams, Cherubs Floral Design, Friends of Reading Museum
Reading Museum / Reading Abbey Quarter

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Young Talent of the Year – under 25

An artist or group of artists that are displaying real talent and potential at a relatively young age (under 25).

Winner
John Madejski Academy (Performing Arts)

Finalists
Reading Rep
Calum Cromwell

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Cultural Space of the Year

Dedicated arts venue or unusual space used for art….This award recognises the diversity of great places to enjoy and perform art and cultural activities in Reading.

Winner
The Oracle Shopping Centre

Finalists
Rising Sun Arts Centre
Museum of English Rural Life

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Partnership of the Year

Demonstrating excellence in partnership working, this could be businesses working with arts organisation(s) or arts partnerships, education etc.

Winner
Zap Magazine, Rising Sun Arts Centre, Real Time Video, Spectrum Arts, Neile Wright, Our Time Video, Move Up project

Finalists
Alby the Penguin Saves Christmas, Reading Libraries, Reading Rep, Oxford Playhouse, Jelly and Reading College
Being Gordon Greenidge, South Street Arts Centre, Department of Film, Theatre & Television at University of Reading, the Barbados and Friends Association of Reading (BAFA) and Reading School

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Visual Arts Event of the Year

Fine art, film, etc. – the event will have been well regarded in Reading when it took place here but does not necessarily need to have been made in Reading.

Winner
Open for Art

Finalists
Whiteknights Studio Trail
Reading International

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Cultural Organisation of the Year

This organisation will have demonstrated consistently high standards in terms of output and engagement.

Winner
Reading Between the Lines theatre company

Finalists
Aldworth Philharmonic Orchestra
Rising Sun Arts Centre

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Best Education Project

A project that shows the power of art and culture to engage young people and create high-quality artistic outputs.

Winner
Around the World in 80 Washing Lines, Mahlia Amatina

Finalists
The Partnership Festival, University of Reading
John Madejski Academy

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The Made in Reading Award

A ‘piece’ made by a Reading artist or artists. This could be a performance, visual arts piece or project but must be created within Reading.

Winner
Being Gordon Greenidge, South Street Arts Centre & Benedict Sandiford

Finalists
Lillies for Oscar Wilde, Reading Museum, Jelly, Reading Guild of Artists, Two Rivers Press, Haslams, Cherubs Floral Design, Friends of Reading Museum
Forgotten Heritage, Matthew Emmett

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Business Champion of the Arts

A business which has played a major contribution in supporting and developing the arts in Reading.

Winner
Reading Buses

Finalists
Broad Street Mall
Oracle Shopping Centre

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Judges Award - Outstanding contribution to the Arts in Reading

An organisation or individual who has made a real difference to the arts over a sustained period of time. This is a special award presented by the panel of judges with no nomination process.

Winner
Rising Sun Arts Centre

Sponsors

Reading UK

Reading UK is the economic development company for Reading. Part of the management group for Reading 2016, funder of the ARENA programme through our management of the BID and the creator of the new Reading-on-Thames Festival, Reading UK believe that arts, culture and heritage are at the heart of what makes Reading tick. Reading’s cultural identity plays an important role in making Reading an exciting place to work, live or do business.

The Olympia Ballroom

Located in the heart of Reading town centre on London Street, The Olympia Ballroom is one of the largest indoor venue hire locations in Berkshire. The conveniently central location, exquisite architecture and interior lends itself to corporate and private venue hire events. The main ballroom remains virtually unchanged to this day, with its original domed structure still intact. The Ballroom is filled with history dating back to the 1700s. Through the 60s, many great well known bands played at The Olympia. Including bands such as The Who, The Rolling Stones and The Birds. Today, The Olympia Ballroom continues to attract the surrounding communities with the most impressive event hire space in Berkshire, available for Weddings, Corporate Events and Community Gatherings. More information at shehnaigroup.co.uk