Applications for part of £1.57bn fund launch
Wednesday, 29 July 2020
john-schnobrich-yfbyvpeghfq-unsplashPhoto: John Schnobrich
UK - Arts organisations can now apply for a portion of the government’s £1.57bn relief fund.
Up to £622m in grants will be made available during this first phase of the programme, including a £2.25m pot for grassroot music venues announced earlier this month.
Arts Council England will allocate £500m, with handouts of between £50,000 and £3m available for cultural organisations based in England, such as theatres, music and comedy venues and museums.
The rest of the money will be distributed by the British Film Institute (£30m) for independent cinemas, and the National Lottery Heritage (£92m) to protect heritage sites.
To be eligible for a grant through ACE, organisations must be registered at Companies House and/or Charity Commission, and be able to present at least one year’s full independently certified or audited financial statements.
Applications can be lodged on the body’s website across two rounds in August, although ACE expects that 75% of the budget will be allocated during round one.
Deadlines for applying are 10 August to 21 August for round one, and 21 August to 4 September for round two.
Successful applicants are required to use the money from 1 October 2020 to 31 March 2021.
Loans totalling £270m are also part of the programme. Organisations can apply for either a grant or a loan but not both. Decisions on repayable finance awards will be made by the Culture Recovery Board, appointed by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. Loan terms are expected to include an up to 20-year repayment, an initial repayment holiday of up to four years, and a 2% interest rate per annum.
A new independent Culture Recovery Board will be chaired by Sir Damon Buffini to help administer the programme, advising on the largest grant as well deciding the beneficiaries of the loans.
Meanwhile, a further £258m will be reserved for a second round of funding later in the financial year, to meet “the developing needs of organisations”.
Culture secretary Oliver Dowden comments: "Help is on the way to our much loved cultural and heritage organisations with our £1.57bn fund. This support package will protect buildings, organisations and people to help ensure our wonderful institutions, big and small, pull through COVID. Today we’re publishing guidance so organisations know how to access help. We’re also calling on organisations to be creative in diversifying their income streams and the public to continue supporting the places they love so this funding can be spread as far and wide as possible."

Film and TV Production Restart Scheme
The government has also announced a UK-wide £500m Film and TV Production Restart Scheme that will benefit TV and film productions across the country halted or delayed during the pandemic.
It will fill the gap left by the lack of available insurance and cover coronavirus-related losses for cast member and crew illnesses and filming delays or disruptions caused by the ongoing battle against the virus.
The funding will be available to all productions made by companies where at least half of the production budget is spent in the UK and is estimated to cover more than 70% of the film and TV production market to the end of the year.

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