A “CRUCIAL” grant of almost £1million will provide a lifeline to a historic palace and museums in Brighton.

The Royal Pavilion and Museums Trust (RPMT) has been awarded £990,000 through the government’s Culture Recovery Fund, designed to help secure the future of arts and heritage sites and venues amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The RPMT is one of 146 arts and cultural organisations in the South East to receive a grant, and is among the 43 sites in East Sussex to be awarded cash through the fund.

SEE ALSO: The full list of East Sussex organisations awarded recovery funding

Reacting to the announcement on Monday, RPMT chairman Michael Bedingfield said: “This is wonderful news from Arts Council England and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

The Argus: Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, which reopens on Saturday with a new David Bowie exhibitionBrighton Museum and Art Gallery, which reopens on Saturday with a new David Bowie exhibition

“The Culture Recovery Fund is crucial to the Royal Pavilion and Museums, to provide continuity of an amazing visitor experience with added certainly during this pandemic.

“We were able to reopen the Royal Pavilion and Preston Manor in the summer.

“This week Brighton Museum and Art Gallery opens with the launch of David Bowie, Rock’n’roll with Me, a stunning exhibition including previously unseen photographs.

“With the news of our Culture Recovery Fund award, we will be able to continue planning exhibitions of this quality and enabling our cultural assets to continue to thrive in our city.”

SEE ALSO: David Bowie exhibition to launch at Brighton Museum and Art Gallery

Between April and June, the Royal Pavilion and Museums lost £1.3 million as its sites were closed to the public, and 70 per cent of its running costs are covered by earned income from ticket sales, retail, programmes and events.

The RPMT now looks after the Royal Pavilion, Brighton and Hove Museum and Art Gallery, Preston Manor, Hove Museum and the Booth Museum, having recently taken over the management of these sites from Brighton and Hove City Council on October 1.

The £990k grant will support the recovery programme of the organisation, which aims to attract UK visitors to its museums while the international tourist market remains limited amid the pandemic.

The Royal Pavilion reopened in July with new Covid-safe measures, and tickets must be booked in advance.

Preston Manor reopened last month with a new children’s trail in the elegant surroundings of the Edwardian manor house.

Brighton Museum and Art Gallery is due to reopen this Saturday with the launch of the Rock ‘n’ Roll with me: Bowie/MacCormack 1973-76 photographic exhibition.

For more information, visit brightonmuseums.org.uk.