Arts Council England is making £160 million of emergency funding  available  for those individuals and organisations who need it during the coronavirus Covid-19 crisis. ACE has also changed its funding requirements for individuals and organisations currently in receipt of funding.

£20 million of financial support is available to support artists, creative practitioners and freelancers. ACE says the support aims to help individuals to ‘better sustain themselves, and their work, in the coming months’. Artists and creative practitioners will be able to apply for grants of up to £2,500 if they have a track record in publicly funded culture. ACE is looking to provide £4 million from this £20 million budget for grants to benevolent funds targeted at other cultural workers.

£90 million is being made available to National Portfolio Organisations, while £50 million will be made available to organisations that are not in receipt of regular funding from Arts Council England.

ACE says it has re-purposed all its investment strands to be able to offer the support. Funding has come from reallocation of National Lottery Project Grants, Developing Your Creative Practice and its Development Funds for the 2020-21 period, and uses up almost all of the organisation’s reserves.

Sir Nicholas Serota, Arts Council England chair, said: “Covid-19 is having an impact globally, far beyond the cultural sector, but our responsibility is to sustain our sector as best we can so that artists and organisations can continue to nourish the imagination of people across the country, both during the crisis and in the period of recovery.

“None of us can hope to weather this storm alone, but by working together in partnership, I believe we can emerge the stronger, with ideas shared, new ways of working, and new relationships forged at the local, national and even international level.”

More information on all three funds will be announced by Arts Council England soon.