Funding advice for the South West
Arts Council England South West
Of course perhaps the most obvious place to start for funding is with the Arts Council, but maybe you are not sure what the best way to go about this is? Start by looking through the different funding options to see what is best for you;
Grants for Arts (GFA) usually provide funding for research and development projects such as creating a tour ready show. Find out more about the South West Arts council here: http://www.artscouncil.org.uk/regions/south-west/
Write to them: Senate Court, Southernhay Gardens Exeter EX1 1UG
Kate Offord: Kate.Offord@artscouncil.org.uk (currently on maternity leave) is the South West literature manager, her cover is David Woolley: David.Woolley@artscouncil.org.uk. Going straight to these people will give you a better chance of getting your questions answered by people who understand the current climate.
Local organisations, such as those above will have small pots of money to support particular projects that fit with the criteria they wish to cover. Often in the South West this will involve rural projects that focus on reaching wider audiences or enabling rural communities. Villages in Action, Take Art and Cyprus Well can provide support for rural projects.
It is important to remember that support does not always come in the form of hard cash, but ‘in kind’ support can be invaluable. Support in the areas other than performance such as rehearsal space, marketing, and general help and advice will build your knowledge and confidence in your work and help shape your ideas. Talk to as many useful people as you can, often those without the financial support still have professional knowledge they will be happy to pass on.
Sponsorship is another avenue to funding, depending what you are making. You will find that local businesses are often happy to help if they will benefit. The most important thing to remember with funding is to be clear about what your product is and what the benefits will be for those who invest.