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  • 26 Apr 2021

UK Trusts and Foundations contribute £88 million to arts and cultural sector

New research commissioned by a group of Trusts and Foundations demonstrates their significant investment in the UK’s arts and cultural ecology.

Key findings include:

  • Trusts and Foundations provide 10% of income to the average arts organisation in the UK
  • The majority of grants awarded by Trusts and Foundations are below £400,000
  • The combined investment in arts and cultural organisations totalled £88 million in 2019/20

The briefing was commissioned by The Arts Funders Group, a group of independent Trusts and Foundations who meet regularly to share intelligence and shape collective action. The Group is part of the ACF Funders’ Collaborative Hub.

The data aimed to show the overall contribution of Trusts and Foundations to the UK’s arts funding ecology, and to highlight how it fits into the wider funding context (particularly at a time of change), identifying shared priorities and ambitions. It analyses grants made by the 19 most significant Trusts and Foundations in the arts and culture sector in the financial year 2019/20, the last ‘typical’ year where audited information was available.

Sufina Ahmad, Director John Ellerman Foundation said: “Independent grant-makers coming together and sharing their data in this way was an important exercise to commit to – even if it did feel experimental at times! The research reveals the contribution we are making to the UK’s arts and cultural sectors, which will become even more important as organisations look to recover from the impacts of Covid-19 against a backdrop of stretched public funding.”

Holly Donagh, Director Strategic Learning, Insight and Influence, Paul Hamlyn Foundation said: “By coming together to analyse our funding data, we can better understand our shared role in supporting the UK’s arts and cultural organisations. Each of us individually is a small component in the complex arts fundraising landscape in the UK, but we are all committed to supporting the creative industries to recover and thrive, and are pleased to be working together to assess opportunities for greater collective impact.”

The full report can be downloaded here.