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Creative Cornwall

Written by Rosanna Weatherly

(Updated with information on the latest Cultural Recovery Fund Round – see Covid-19 section below)

On Monday 14 June, Cornwall submitted its bid to be Capital of Culture 2025 so we thought it was a good time to set out the business landscape for the creative sector in Cornwall and, because we are accountants, to highlight a number of potential sources of funding.

Landscape

For centuries, Cornwall has been a hub of creativity. Our history has been shaped and moulded by creative influences; our tourism today is bolstered by it. People have been drawn from across the globe to witness Cornwall’s creative scene.

Consequently, Cornwall’s economy relies on the arts and entertainment industry, with the proportion of Cornish people working in the creative sector being 12% greater than the national average. This creative sector goes well beyond the artists and musicians who are based in the county to include, for example, Game Development Studios.

Yet we know for some, working in the creative industry is tougher than ever. At PKF Francis Clark we recognise that the turbulence caused by Covid-19 has affected many businesses in many ways. One of the most affected industry is the arts, which has suffered huge losses in revenue due to the coronavirus restrictions limiting access to events, shows and exhibitions.

Funding

Many businesses will already know about funding from the Arts Council and National Lottery, but there are also charities that target the Cornwall and/ or wider South West arts sector, which provide grant funding including: FEAST – funds projects which generate arts and cultural activity in towns, villages and parishes across Cornwall in a way that is highly visible to the public and the people whose decisions will affect future funding for the arts.

We have seen a number of arts based projects and businesses use crowdfunding to good effect – and I will look at this in a different blog.

Creative England is running a funding workshop hosted by Creative Enterprise on 22 June covering: The New Ideas Fund, The Business Planning Support Fund, Female Founders Scheme and The Investment (Debt) Fund. If you are interested in attending contact Charlotte or Amelia at Creative England.

Covid-19

We also recognise that many artists in Cornwall are self-employed and have been hard-hit by the coronavirus pandemic. The UK Government has schemes in place to help the self-employed and others impacted by Covid-19 restrictions, details of general business support can be found at https://www.pkf-francisclark.co.uk/coronavirus-updates/.

At the end of last week (25 June), the UK government announced that “the final £300 million of the government’s £2 billion rescue package will support thousands of organisations in the run up to fuller reopening and beyond” (Gov.UK, 2021). Applications are to open shortly and you can find more details on the third round of the Culture Recovery Fund here.

Cornwall Council and Cornwall and Isles of Scilly LEP

Though it can often feel like the creative sector is somewhat left behind when the government and councils are making their policies, Cornwall Council has pledged to support Culture and Creative Economy over the next five years.

With Cornwall applying to be the City of Culture 2025, which will be towards the end of the Council’s manifesto pledge timeframe, this gives us hope that even more funding and infrastructure for the creative sector being available in the future.

PKF Francis Clark

We act for a number of businesses and charities engaged in creative sector and personally, I am excited to see the sector flourish post pandemic and have fingers well and truly crossed for a successful outcome to City of Culture 2025.

I could not finish this blog without a call out to my sister who was heavily involved in Behind the Postcard – a video compiled by the creative sector in response to Cornwall hosting the 2021 G7 Summit. You can watch the video here.

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