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Janet Archer on the Regular Funding 2018-21 decisions

Yesterday, we announced our Regular Funding decisions for 2018-21 set against a budget of £33m a year, which is the same amount of funding that we provided from 2015-18 to organisations based in and working across Scotland.

Overall we are funding 116 organisations across craft, dance, literature, music, screen, theatre and visual arts. Collectively they represent a range and breadth of artistic and creative excellence led by people at different stages of their creative careers across many areas of practice. Regular funding isn’t the only route to funding from Creative Scotland. Every year we make around 1000 project awards. In 2016/17 funding awarded through our project and targeted routes delivered £34.2m to individuals, companies and organisations working in many different ways.   

Announcing and communicating funding decisions is always a sensitive time. We have now entered into a period of discussions with individual Regular Funding applicants, unsuccessful and successful, from across the art forms and creative areas that we support. All organisations coming out of Regular Funding will receive six months transition funding from April 2018. We will also discuss future options for funding with applicants who want to access advice and guidance from Creative Scotland over the coming months.

We have received significant comment on our decisions around children’s theatre and disability led arts. We are currently in discussions with the companies concerned and representatives from these sectors to explain our decisions and rationale and discuss how we can continue to work positively together in the future.   

Our approach for touring theatre has been to establish a new £2m strategic Touring Fund from April 2019, supported by the National Lottery, which will provide an additional route to funding in the future, running alongside Open Project funding. The development of this new fund will complement the network of Regularly Funded Organisations (RFOs) and enhance opportunities for companies to work with venues to grow audiences.

This fund has been established in response to a review of touring theatre and dance in Scotland, published in 2017 in consultation with the theatre and dance sectors and the Federation of Scottish Theatre. We will open this fund for applications in June 2018. Our strong belief is that this approach will in the long term generate more opportunities for theatre in Scotland to flourish and for more people across the country to be able to experience and enjoy it. In the meantime, we are funding Catherine Wheels, Visible Fictions, Fire Exit, Mischief La Bas and Rapture in 2018-19, at the same level of funding they received in 2017-18. We profoundly value and respect their work and together they comprise an important part of Scotland’s theatre sector. This extension of funding levels for 12 months has been committed to allow time for the new Touring Fund to be co-designed with the sector.

We will continue to work with artists, companies and organisations to support them as best we can across all of our funding routes.

Janet Archer
Chief Executive, Creative Scotland