Creative Scotland Regular Funding: The winners & losers

Arts organisations across Scotland discover today if they are to receive awards from Creative Scotland's three year Regular Funding pot

Article by The Skinny | 25 Jan 2018

Last April arts organisations across Scotland sent off applications to Creative Scotland in the hope of securing some of the funding body’s vital three-year Regular Funding. This year’s overall Regular Funding budget came in at just over £99m, similar to the pot three years ago. The funds have been spread over 116 organisations, 19 of which are receiving Regular Funding for the first time.

The aim of the Regular Funding, says Creative Scotland's Chief Executive Janet Archer, is to “provide three-year funding to a wide range of organisations which create, present and support excellence across craft, dance, literature, music, screen, theatre and visual arts, reaching out to all parts of Scotland and internationally.”

As was the case three years ago, the biggest payouts have gone to some of Scotland’s largest arts institutions. Around 20% of all the available funding is snapped up by just four organisations, with Edinburgh International Festival once again taking the biggest chunk with £6,952,000 to be awarded over the next three years. They're closely followed by three titans of Scottish theatre: the Dundee Rep (£5,945,010), the Royal Lyceum Company in Edinburgh (£3,630,000 – up from £3m last time round), and Citizens Theatre in Glasgow (£3,333,000). The Centre for the Moving Image, which includes Edinburgh Film Festival as well as Filmhouse in Edinburgh and the Belmont in Aberdeen, also had its funding from last time matched with £3,200,000 awarded.

Among the new additions to the CS Regular Funding pool are the forward-thinking artist moving image festival Alchemy Film and Arts in Hawick (£348,462), Stills Centre for Photography in Edinburgh (£441,000), youth dance school Bodysurf Scotland (£586,277) and Toonspeak Young People's Theatre (£180,000) – the latter awards speaking to CS’s aim to give “support for young people and creative learning in this Year of Young People.”

There is also funding for a number of curatorial and network organisations in this three-year cycle, such as the Scottish Music Industry Association (organisers of the annual Scottish Album of the Year Award), the Scottish Contemporary Art Network (which works to promote contemporary artists and arts education), the Federation of Scottish Theatre (a development and advocacy group for theatremakers in Scotland) plus Creative Edinburgh and Creative Dundee.

There were some losers, however. Twenty organisations that received funds three years ago from the Regular Funding pot have not been awarded anything in this round of funding. In Glasgow, two vital visual arts organisations – Transmission gallery and multi-arts organisation NVA, who are currently focused of transforming the derelict St Peter’s Seminary in Argyll into an arts venue – have not been awarded regular funding this time round.

In Edinburgh, the biggest surprise was that the Fringe – the world’s largest art event – didn’t receive any funding this time around. Festival City Theatres Trust, who operate the Festival and King's Theatres in the capital, and the City of Literature Trust are in the same position, with no Regular Funding awarded.

“Regular Funding is a highly competitive application process where demand has once again, far outstripped available funding,” says Archer in CS' press release. “While we can’t support everyone, we seek to provide a range of different opportunities to access support across all of our funding routes, including Open Project and Targeted Funding."

Also announced today was plans to create a new Touring Fund to bring arts to more audiences in the more far flung parts of Scotland. “We are developing a new £2m Touring Fund for 2019/20, with support from the National Lottery, as part of our Targeted Funds,” notes Archer. “This will support touring companies to work with venues to grow audiences, offering a further alternative route to funding for performing arts organisations not included in the Regular Funding network.”

The full list of Creative Scotland Regular Funding awardees can be found here