Two community arts projects in Swindon working with children and vulnerable adults are celebrating a U-turn on funding cuts.

Up until the beginning of Thursday’s meeting of Swindon Borough Council, Prime Theatre and Reach Inclusive Arts, both based at the Wyvern Theatre, were expecting to lose thousands.

Prime was looking at a cut of £7,000 and Reach about £3,000.

But at the last minute, the Conservative administration agreed to a Labour amendment to restore the £10,000 to the budget.

Mark Powell, artistic director of Prime Theatre, said he was thrilled at the news: “We’re hugely relieved on behalf of our children that once again Swindon councillors are making a commitment to culture when arts organisations deliver civic roles.

“Prime works with the council’s children’s services department to deliver highly subsidised projects and productions, which are free to disadvantaged, looked after and deaf children.

“The proposed cut would have meant a dramatic cut to Prime’s educational programme.

"Last year we engaged over 10,000 children raising communication, confidence and academic achievement.”

Just down the corridor from Prime Theatre, projects co-ordinator at Reach Inclusive Arts Helen Whelehan was leading a workshop.

She said: “It’s really pleasing that it’s being acknowledged how we are supporting and delivering alongside adult services at the council.

"Any cuts would have had major impact on projects and our current ability to secure even more funding for Swindon.

"We’re glad that the council and the wider public are behind our work.”

Also delighted was Labour councillor Jane Milner-Barry, who is the group’s spokeswoman for the town centre and heritage and arts, although it deprived her of a moment in the spotlight.

She said: “I was delighted that the proposal to reverse the budget was accepted and the money will not be taken from these two projects, which do such wonderful work

“I had a speech ready for the meeting, but I didn’t have to make it in the end.”