In 1946 the Arts Council was established with an annual grant to distribute among the arts. This ensured the survival of companies like the Sadler's Wells Ballet and Opera and the eventual establishment of the Royal Opera, the Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theatre as well as supporting theatre in the regions and the work of individual artists and companies. By 1956 the Arts Council was subsidising forty companies across the country and between 1958 and 1970 fifteen new theatres had been constructed with public money.