Funding axed for magazine

A FREE youth magazine in Ipswich is today facing uncertain times after some of its funding was cut following the publication of sexual images.

A FREE youth magazine in Ipswich is today facing uncertain times after some of its funding was cut following the publication of sexual images.

Ipswich Borough Council has suspended its funding of IP1 magazine for the rest of this year following a complaint they received about some artwork in the magazine, which showed three couples engaged in sexual acts.

IP1 defended the artwork, done by local artist Berry Patten for their special edition on sex earlier this year, and blasted the council for not supporting a worthy local cause. At the time the council removed all the copies from its centres, including the tourist information centre.

IP1 magazine has applied for next year's funding and the council has confirmed it will still be considering their application.


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Leah Kurta, volunteer co-ordinator at IP1 magazine, said: “We are looking to move forward. We want to have a good working relationship with the council. It is not just about the money-it is about being able to work with them because we put our magazines in their spaces.

“For them to cut us off like that is really not fair. We are a local group that provides a voice for a lot of young people in the area.

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“We would want their support in the future to apply for more money for funding.

“You will always offend one person with whatever you print. We had so much good response from the local community at the time and most of our advertisers applauded it, saying it was art. We have made an effort to put a disclaimer on magazine.”

The majority of their funding comes from V charity however the council's money, amounting to about £2,000 a year, helped to cover overheads, like maintaining the office, and allowing them to create volunteering positions for young people.

An Ipswich Borough Council spokesman said: “IP1 magazine has applied for a grant next year but we have decided to suspend this year's funding.

“We are still concerned over inappropriate material appearing and have a duty to spend the public's money wisely.

“The recent Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand controversy emphasises this point.

“We are not censoring this publication. They are free to use their own money to publish their own material within the law.”

Do you think the council is right to suspend their funding? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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