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Grants and External Funding

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Open 4 Business Portal

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To support our businesses during the current COVID-19 crisis, and into the recovery phase, Carlisle City Council is providing free access to Open 4 Business. Open4Business is designed to support businesses locate relevant up to date funding opportunities.

The portal is updated regularly with new local, regional and national funding announcements and can be easily searched by businesses on the basis of their industry, region and business size. The portal then provides information on how to apply for funding and contact funders directly. To search for grants for your business you will first need to register on the Open4Business website


Grants and Funding News

NESTA Cultural Impact Development Fund

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Fund Information

Funding body: Nesta

Funding available: £25,000 to £150, 000

Application deadline: 31/08/2021

Objectives of Fund

The objectives of the fund are to:

  • Enable risk-taking, ambitious organisations in the arts and cultural sector to take on small-scale repayable finance in order to achieve social outcomes.
  • Increase the capability of arts and cultural organisations to articulate, achieve, monitor and evaluate their intended social impact.

Value Notes

Cultural Impact Development Fund offers unsecured loans (and revenue participation agreements, where appropriate) between £25,000 and £150,000 with repayment term of one to five years and interest rates ranging between 5.5% and 8.5%.

Cultural Impact Development Fund will pioneer the use of financial incentives to drive the achievement of social impact targets in its investment portfolio, making it one of the few impact investment funds with a clear trade-off of financial return for the attainment of social outcomes. The financial incentive takes the form of a reduction to the headline interest on a given loan in cases where the total loan term is 36 months or more.

Who Can Apply

Arts and culture organisations based in England are eligible to apply, including:

  • Arts and cultural venues

  • Museums, libraries and archives

  • Non-venue based organisations (e.g. touring organisations, production companies, festivals, etc.)

  • Sector support organisations (e.g. development agencies, workspace providers, cultural education organisations)

Charities, community interest companies and community benefit societies with a recognised charitable purpose are eligible for investment. Other incorporated entities, such as companies limited by shares, will be considered based on the strength of their social mission and whether the majority of their profit will be reinvested into that mission.

Organisations must be registered in England and primarily benefiting communities in England. Digital organisations will need to demonstrate their primary audiences are based in England.




Loans will not be made to individuals, sole traders, partnerships or unincorporated bodies (unless their partners/members are exclusively corporate bodies).

How To Apply

Contact NESTA for more information: [email protected]

Applications for investment must be submitted before the deadline of 31 August 2021.

Useful documents & links

Useful Links

Addresses and contacts

For further information on how to obtain this grant locally, please contact the following:

  1. Arts Culture Finance Enquiries 
    58 Victoria Embankment 
    ECAY 0DS 
    Tel: 020 7438 2500 
    Fax: 020 7438 2501 
    Email: [email protected]

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