After suspending the National Lottery Project Grants programme in March 2020 due to the coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis, Arts Council England is re-opening the programme for applications today, aiming to support individuals and organisations to get activities up and running again.
Applications are accepted for grants of between £1,000 and £100,000. The total amount of funding available between July 2020 and April 2021 is £59.8 million.
The grants can support a broad range of activities, ranging from projects that directly create and deliver creative and cultural activity and content for audiences, visitors and digital users, to those that have a longer term impact on strengthening the sector, such as organisational development, research and development and sector support.
Due to the impact that the coronavirus pandemic has had on the arts sector, the Arts Council is particularly keen to support:
Applications from individual creative practitioners (including time to think and plan).
Research and development activity.
Organisational development activity.
Live activity that can be safely delivered within this period (rather than activity with a start date far in the future).
Activity that closely aligns with the Arts Council’s Equality Objectives.
Most of the criteria of the programme have remained the same as they were before it was suspended but the Arts Council has removed the requirement for a minimum 10% match funding until further notice, taking into account that artists and organisations are struggling to secure any additional funding under the present circumstances. Additionally, some changes were made which were already due to launch before the programme was suspended. Most notably, public libraries can now apply for grants to deliver activities addressing any one of the four Universal Library Offers (Creativity and Culture; Reading; Information and Digital; Health and Wellbeing).
Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis from 22 July 2020 onwards.