The Whitley Pump

The view from Katesgrove Hill

Reading Cultural Awards 2019

Winners of the Reading Cultural Awards were announced at the ceremony at the Hilton Hotel in Whitley on the evening of Monday 24 June. Some of the winners have south Reading connections or have exhibited locally and others were events or performances which had been attended or reviewed by the Whitley Pump. It was a busy year!

The South Street Arts Centre in Katesgrove won the Cultural Space of the Year award.

Winners of the Cultural Organisation of the Year category, the University of Reading based Reading: International, has exhibited in Katesgrove. The billboards at the junction of Crown Street and Southampton Street now wasting away in the elements were part of a project A Reproduction of three weeks in May 1970. We also reviewed an exhibition, (Un)Commoning Voices and (Non)Communal Bodies, which was at Brock Keep and a performance of Redundant as eyelids in the absence of light at the Great Hall on the London Road campus.

The Whitley Pump reviewed the performance of The Government Inspector by John Madejski Academy’s performing arts which was part of the 2018 Reading Fringe Festival, which was the winner of the Reading Great Place Award.

We were also there to see the winner of the Made in Reading Award, Henry II. This is the third amazing Reading history play by Beth Flintoff, and was performed by Reading Between the Lines Theatre Company at St Mary’s Minster.

Reading College-based Reading Rep won the 2019 Judge’s Award for outstanding contribution to the arts in Reading. We reviewed two Reading Rep productions last year; Mountaintop and A new coat for Christmas.

The Celebrating Reading’s Heritage Award was won by Reading Abbey Revealed and the re-opening of Reading Abbey, an amazing day just over a year ago.

Finalists in the twelve categories and this year’s winners, including the 2019 Judge’s Award, are shown in the table below.

Category2019 finalists 2019 winner
Reading Great Place Award
(Reading Place of Culture Ambassador Award in 2018)
Reading School of Dance

Reading Fringe Festival

Mountain Top, a Reading Rep production


Reading Fringe Festival
Performance of the YearBirdsong by Progress Theatre

A Christmas Carol by Reading Between the Lines

Golden Day by Reading Phoenix Choir

Golden Day by Reading Phoenix Choir
Festival of the YearReadipop Festival

Open for Art

Here Comes The Sun

Readipop Festival
Newcomer of the Year
(Young Talent of the Year – under 25 in 2018)
Reside Dance

Charles West

Double Okay Group

Reside Dance
Cultural Space of the YearOpen Hand Open Space

South Street Arts Centre


South Street Arts Centre
Partnership in the Arts
(Partnership of the Year in 2018)
Night in The Ruins – Reading Borough Council/ Reading Abbey Revealed project, Are You Listening? Festival, Reading Fringe Festival

Living Advent Calendar – Steph Weller/Sarah Stuffins/Zsuzsi Lindsay (producers), Reading BID, 100 artists and many local businesses

Alby the Penguin Saves Christmas/A New Coat for Christmas – Reading Rep Theatre, Reading Libraries, Oxford Playhouse, Fintlock Theatre, Jelly.

Night in The Ruins – Reading Borough Council/ Reading Abbey Revealed project, Are You Listening? Festival, Reading Fringe Festival
Visual Arts Event of the YearReading: International

Caversham Arts Trail

Open for Art

Caversham Arts Trail
Cultural Organisation of the YearReading Film Theatre

Open Hand Open Space

Reading International

Reading International
Best Education ProjectGive and Take by Soulscape, Reading Rep and Activate Learning

After School Art School by Jelly

Creative Arts Department at Brookfields School

Creative Arts Department at Brookfields School
The Made in Reading AwardHenry II by Reading Between the Lines Theatre Company

Big Blue by Beautiful Creatures

In Ruins by South Street Arts Centre/SITELINES

Henry II by Reading Between the Lines Theatre Company
Business Champion of the ArtsBroad Street Mall

Thames Tower


Broad Street Mall
Celebrating Reading’s HeritageReading Abbey Revealed/ Reading Abbey re-opens

Henry II Reading Between the Lines

Turn Tilehurst Red

Reading Abbey Revealed/ Reading Abbey re-opens
2019 Judge’s Award – Outstanding Contribution to the Arts in Readingn/aReading Rep

The Whitley Pump has reviewed many plays, exhibitions and other performances in the past year, with special attention given to organisations and venues from south Reading. To find out about events locally, follow our What’s On page.

  1. Reading Cultural Awards
  2. Whitley Pump reviews
  3. What’s On page

1 comment

  1. Thank you for sharing Evelyn – so good to see Birdsong in the final 3 of Performance of the Year and also Reading Rep’s recognition. Btw I see the Living Advent Calendar was shortlisted – good to be nearly part of an award!!😃

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