Controversial West Bromwich arts centre The Public is to appeal for more Government cash to keep it going after the Arts Council announced it was allowing new organisations to bid for funds.

The arts centre, which has already had £63 million of public money ploughed into it, said it would put in an application for more funds from the Arts Council.

Arts Council England said it was introducing a new applications system to make recipients more accountable and open up the process to new organisations.

The Government quango had previously refused to give The Public any more money after offering a one-off £3 million grant to the troubled project last year.

The Arts Council had also pumped £520,000 a year into the scheme when it opened in 2007 but pulled the regular funding two years later because the interactive part of the gallery had not opened.

Last month Sandwell Council agreed to set £1.5 million of cash aside for the venue.

Linda Saunders, managing director of The Public, said: “We welcome the new funding arrangements from Arts Council England and the opportunity for new organisations to apply. We will be submitting a bid in due course and look forward to delivering another successful programme of events.

 “Our programme of activities, exhibitions and events are really striking a chord with users and the community.  We’re receiving great feedback and the growing visitor numbers indicates that the venue is becoming a destination of choice for people of Sandwell and further a field.”

Run by Sandwell Arts Trust, a division of Sandwell Council, options for funding had appeared limited after both the Arts Council  and the borough council had previously announced there would be no more money for the gallery.

Prior to the official opening last August, the community’s reaction to The Public had been overwhelmingly negative amid reports of spiralling costs and delays in opening.

But, since the doors opened, Mrs Saunders said those voicing disappointment were diminishing.

The Arts Council’s current annual grant is set to drop by £100 million as a result of the recent spending review, and more than 100 organisations are expected to lose their funding.

The organisation is tasked with handing out Government funding to venues across the country, ranging from local companies to the Royal Opera House.

Last week it announced it was cutting 6.9 per cent of all grants, which saw the Royal Shakespeare Company lose £1 million and Birmingham Royal Ballet £563,000 from their annual grants.