Culture Vannin was established in 1982 by the Isle of Man Government to promote Manx culture, heritage and language. Its motto is "Taking Culture Forward". It was renamed in February 2014, having previously been known as the "Manx Heritage Foundation" (Manx: Undinys Eiraght Vannin), since the former title "held connotations more towards the cultural history of the island" which were not felt to be accurate to the organisation's progressive approach to invigorating Manx culture.
The management board of the Foundation consists of two MHKs appointed by Tynwald, three members of the general public nominated by the Council of Ministers and approved by Tynwald, and a representative from both the Isle of Man Arts Council and Manx National Heritage. It is chaired by the Hon. Phil Gawne, MHK.
The Foundation currently employs four members staff:
- Manx Language Coordinator: Adrian Cain
- Manx Music Development Officer: Dr Breesha Maddrell
- Manx Music Specialist: Dr Chloë Woolley
- Administrator: Charles Guard
Culture Vannin's policy states that its three main aims are:
1) To identify the unique areas of Manx Heritage and Culture and;
2) To find practical ways of making them relevant to today's society;
3) To support the Manx identity and contemporary Manx culture.
The Foundation sets out to achieve these aims by offering financial assistance through grants or loans, by undertaking and commissioning its own research/publishing, and by offering practical advice and assistance where appropriate.
The Foundation considers Manx culture to include all of the following: crafts, language, history, natural history, music, literature, folk-lore, art, folk dance, architecture, archaeology, industrial development, law and ecology.
Examples of key work carried out by the Foundation includes:
- The awarding of Reih Bleeaney Vanannan (Manannan's Choice of the Year) in recognition of an outstanding contribution to Manx culture. This has been awarded annually since 1987.
- Support of events that celebrate the Manx language, music and dance, including: Shennaghys Jiu, Yn Chruinnaght, Cooish and Bree.
- The publication or support for publication of a number of books, CDs and DVDs.
- Commissioning and supporting a number of oral history projects.
- 'Re-brand to better reflect its work' News item on IOM Today, published 18 February 2014
- 'The Members' on the Manx Heritage Foundation website (accessed May 15, 2013)
- 'The Officers' on the Manx Heritage Foundation website (accessed May 15, 2013)
- Manx Heritage Foundation Policy (Accessed May 15, 2013)
- Manx Heritage Foundation Act 1982 'Objectives of the Foundation 2, i-xiv' (accessed May 15, 2013)
- ‘Robert Corteen Carswell RBV’ News Item on manxmusic.com February 1, 2013 (accessed May 7, 2013)
- 'Publications' on the Manx Heritage Foundation website (accessed May 15, 2013)
- 'Oral History' on the Manx Heritage Foundation website (accessed May 15, 2013)