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Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight on Birmingham City Council's financial crisis

The creator of Peaky Blinders has given his verdict on the financial crisis at Birmingham City Council and whether it will impact Brum’s growing reputation as a city of culture.

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Steven Knight, creator of Peaky Blinders, speaking at the HS2 event.

Earlier this week, the council finally revealed the true extent of the budget cuts on the way as it faces an enormous budget gap of at least £300 million.

The Labour-run authority has found itself in the bleak predicament due to a number of issues including rising demand for services, an equal pay fiasco, the disastrous implementation of a new IT and finance system and the impact of years of austerity.

As well as hikes in council tax, the council’s budget proposal includes a huge array of cuts that could impact a number of services – from day centres and youth services to bin collections and community libraries.

They also reveal a dramatic impact on the city’s cultural offer. Under the heading of ‘Cultural Organisation Grant reductions’ the council states that, excluding the B:Music premises grant, it intends to ‘reduce other grants by 50 per cent in year one and 100 per cent in year two’.

However, the budget papers and the deep anxiety they will cause among Birmingham’s residents were a stark contrast to the mood at a HS2 event held on Tuesday morning, which explored the impact the project was having on regeneration and investment in the region.

Speaking at the event, Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight CBE spoke about Digbeth Loc. Studios, which has aspirations of fostering the growth of the next wave of creative talent and drawing investment to the city.