THE CULTURAL pedigree of Reading has been recognised through a major award.

Reading’s Year of Culture has been shortlisted in the Planning and Placemaking Awards 2017 for “Best Use of Arts, Culture or Sport in Placemaking”.

The nod comes after a year of activities around the town, including a national recognised adaptation of Henry I and the temporary conversion of Reading Prison into an art gallery.

Nigel Horton Baker, Executive Director, Reading UK CIC, said: “Reading 2016 provided a platform on which many local arts and cultural groups could showcase their talents alongside nationally-renowned artists, creating new cultural experiences for the residents and workforce of the town.

“The programme used over 40 different venues as well as public spaces to make the programme as visible and accessible as possible and raised £350,000 to invest in the town’s cultural offering.

“As a result, a new confidence and ambition for Reading as a cultural destination is emerging and there are exciting plans to keep up the momentum.”

Reading UK CIC, which led Reading 2016 with a range of partners including Reading Borough Council and the University of Reading, nominated Reading for the award.

The town’s entry focused on the major increase in the quality and quantity of arts and cultural activity in the town over 12 months in 2016 and its impact in shining a light on Reading as a creative place to work and live.

The winners will be announced on June 21.