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Lyric Hammersmith Theatre

Government announces details of the £1.57 billion rescue package for the arts

Kitty Underwood

By Kitty Underwood First Published 29 July 2020, Last Updated 29 July 2020

The Government has today announced further details of the £1.57 billion rescue package they pledged to assist the arts in dealing with the fall-out from the coronavirus crisis.

Arts organisations will be able to apply for grants of up to £3 million, with a total of £622 million being distributed to cultural organisations in this first round of funding.

Arts Council England will oversee £500 million to support institutions across the arts and cultural sector including theatres, music and comedy venues and museums.

The government has said that applicants for these grants will need to have “an innovative plan for how they will operate and be sustainable for the remainder of this financial year” and must be able to “demonstrate their international, national or local significance”.

Oliver Dowden called on organisations to “be creative in diversifying their income streams” and on the public to “continue supporting the places they love so this funding can be spread as far and wide as possible”, but stated that “help is on the way”.

Nicholas Serota, Chair of Arts Council England, said:

“Arts and cultural organisations are an integral part of public life in villages, towns and cities across the country. We warmly welcome and are pleased to be administering this vital investment from Government, which will help ensure as many organisations as possible survive the existential challenge posed by Covid-19 so they can continue to serve their communities safely in the future.”

Arts Council England also announced this morning that they will complement the Government’s funding for organisations with support for individuals. They have re-opened the National Lottery Project Grants fund with a total of £75 million available to creatives.

They have also promised a budget of £2 million towards support and skills development for members of the cultural freelance community who will not be eligible to apply to their other funds, such as stage managers and technicians. 


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