Announcement of reopening brings little cheer to music and theatre

Belfast's Grand Opera House
24 Jun 2020

Although museums and galleries in England and Scotland can prepare to reopen, the  performing arts remain in lockdown and fears grow for the future of venue-based organisations.

£32m funding shortfall as demand for ACE funds outstrips supply

a word cloud image featuring phrases such as savings, emergency fund, 3 to 6 months, safety net and others
19 Jun 2020

Two-thirds of organisations and almost three quarters of individuals who applied to Arts Council England for emergency funds were successful, but 4,000 applicants were left disappointed.

Delay to planned Grantium upgrade

Photo shows a youngish man screaming into a telephone in apparent frustration
19 Jun 2020

Arts Council England is preparing to “make changes to Grantium where we can”, including an improved user interface, but the upgrade is currently on hold due to Coronavirus pressures.

Scottish Government announces financial life raft for Edinburgh Fringe

a group of costumed street performers at Edinburgh Fringe
16 Jun 2020

Scotland appears to be the first country in the UK to make a direct Government loan to ensure a cultural organisation can survive the current financial crisis.

Redundancy announcements gather pace

Theatre by the Lake
10 Jun 2020

Furloughed arts employees across the country are being warned of job losses as the next stage of the furlough scheme is deemed “not fit for purpose for the theatre industry”.

Arts Index sets out 10-year trends

National Lottery sticker possibly on a shop door
09 Jun 2020

The sources of money available to the cultural sector have changed significantly over the past decade but the overall picture suggests the sector coped with the changes until the Covid-19 crisis.

Bailout plans progress for sectors whose markets have collapsed

The Old Vic at nightime
07 Jun 2020

A Cultural Investment Participation Scheme offering repayable finance could kickstart the cultural sector’s economy under proposals being drawn up for Government to take a quasi-equity stake in theatres.

DCMS announces Working Groups to advise on reopening

an elephant in close-up
05 Jun 2020

The new forums will give more organisations a voice on the process for opening up venues, but the cash flow crisis facing the entire sector will remain the elephant in the room.

Time to choose

a baseball cap lodged in a life buoy on a boat. The caption on the hat is "harmonize humanity"
04 Jun 2020

Trusts and foundations are preparing to build stronger connections with a changed world and a changed public. Moira Sinclair reflects on this brief window of opportunity for a more equal future – and why the alternative is too grim.

Treating the rash or investing in a cure: the future of artists’ livelihoods

a painting of a ship in a stormy sea
03 Jun 2020

For artists and performers to be supported in the years ahead, de-institutionalisation and the decentralisation of arts funding is a priority. Universal basic income isn’t the whole answer, says Susan Jones.

Record Lottery ticket sales give a boost to the arts

lottery balls spinning
02 Jun 2020

The popularity of draw-based games improved returns to good causes last year, but heavy reliance on retail sales points to a “challenging” year ahead for National Lottery operator Camelot.

Lobbying for creative workers falls on deaf ears

Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer
01 Jun 2020

A tapering extension to pay protection for furloughed employees and Government refusal to acknowledge groups that have fallen through the gaps in its Covid-19 support schemes offer no comfort to the arts.

Sector fights for the survival of the self employed workforce

a man sitting behind a drum-kit in the foreground and a man standing in the background with a keyboard
28 May 2020

A chorus of dismay is growing in response to the deepening financial crisis facing many of the artistic and creative workers who form the largest part of the arts sector, and on whom the UK's arts infrastructure depends.

Ministerial taskforce to discuss reopening, but not funding

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden
22 May 2020

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden is asking senior representatives across the DCMS portfolio to find “creative ways to get these sectors up and running again”, but there is no talk of a cash injection to secure their future.

Inquiry lays bare the impending collapse of the cultural sector ecology

audiences at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre
22 May 2020

Commercial operators reveal eye-watering losses and other non-subsidised organisations sit on the brink of ruin in the absence of financial support from the Government for those ineligible for existing emergency funding streams.

‘Equality, diversity and social justice’ must follow the crisis, says Arts Council

the foyer of Wales Millennium Centre
20 May 2020

The sector is “on its knees”, the Arts Council of Wales tells a Senedd committee, and invites the arts community to contribute to plans for “lasting and systemic change” post-lockdown.

Early applicants were more likely to be winners in ACE emergency funding rounds

15 May 2020

Demand for emergency grants to support non-NPOs and individual artists through the Covid crisis could outstrip the funding available by up to £74m.

London mayor steps in to support ‘at risk’ culture and creative businesses

small, dark empty music venue with mic, drums and piano
30 Apr 2020

Grassroots music venues, artist studio workspaces, independent cinemas and LGBTQ+ venues will share a fund that aims to catch those falling through the gaps in Government coronavirus support schemes.

Up to £1 billion income losses face Arts Council England NPOs

Southbank centre with statue situated in front of a wall displaying the words 'making a future for the theatre'
24 Apr 2020

The £90m emergency fund earmarked to support ACE’s National Portfolio Organisations and Creative People and Places consortia is no more than a drop in the ocean against the vast income streams they are losing as a result of the shutdown.

‘Protect us or lose us’ warn artists

an artist's studio with paintings all around
24 Apr 2020

Leading representative bodies have set out their concerns for visual artists, telling the Chancellor of the Exchequer why coronavirus financial support systems are failing to support them and leaving the nation’s cultural life in jeopardy.


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