ACE announces coronavirus support package

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Arts Council England has promised a package of support for arts workers and organisations hit by the impact of the coronavirus.

In a statement today ACE said it will refocus some grant programmes to help compensate individual artists and freelancers for lost earnings, although such a scheme could take up to ten days before details are announced.

It added that National Portfolio Organisations (NPOs) and Creative People and Places (CPPs) will continue to receive funding, but funding conditions will not apply for at least the next three months. Advance grant payments can also be made to assist with cashflow.

The moves come as the creative and cultural industries have been hit by a wave of closures and cancellations, and the strong possibility that government will shortly introduce a ban on large gatherings.

ACE chair Sir Nicholas Serota said: “Our number one priority for the next three months is to support people who work in the arts, museums and libraries. We want as strong a sector as possible as we come out the other side of this crisis.”

He said everyone should be prudent, preparing and considering adjustments to  business plans in the event that the actions noted are taken. "Consider the level of disruption that might be caused. If you are a public facing venue you may have to close for a period of time, cancel planned events or take action if staff are taken ill" he said.

"If you are a National Portfolio Organisation, Creative People and Places project or Music Education Hub then please contact your relationship manager if you have a specific question or concern about your organisation and the effects of Coronavirus."

ACE also said it was collecting intelligence from across the sector to understand in more detail what the sector needs, and it was in constant conversation with colleagues at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport about the short and long-term financial implications. A central email email address has been set up for queries:

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