A new fund is offering freelance artists, performers, musicians and other creative practitioners in Croydon grants of up to £1,000 and business support to help them during the coronavirus pandemic.
Croydon Council is working with the Croydon Creative Enterprise Zone (CEZ) and the Greater London Authority to offer £25,000 to support independent creatives in the borough. The online application process is open with bids assessed from Monday 22 June. The application window closes on Tuesday 30 June.
Applicants need to be based in an organisation that is part of the CEZ consortium, or work as a delivery partner for a programme funded through the zone. Businesses who have already received financial support from Government schemes including discretionary business grants are not eligible.
One-to-one business support will help recipients network and connect with opportunities across the borough and help them transform how they operate to comply with social distancing rules.
Croydon Council has already provided a £135,000 Cultural Relief Fund to support organisations at risk of closing and fund cultural activities during the health crisis.
“Many smaller creative practitioners and freelancers are in danger of falling between the cracks as they are ineligible for many of the larger Government support schemes so we have made sure they can receive support.
“The creative community is part of Croydon’s heart and soul. We’re offering financial and business support to help these crucial business thrive and continue driving the borough’s vibrant culture.”
Councillor Oliver Lewis, cabinet member for culture, leisure and sport
Justine Simons OBE, Deputy Mayor for Culture and the Creative Industries, said: “Covid-19 is having a devastating impact on the cultural sector with many artists unable to benefit from Government’s support programmes.
“We established the Creative Enterprise Zone to support local organisations and creative businesses, and it will provide a much-needed boost for Croydon’s creative community during these very difficult times. Through this pandemic we have seen the power of culture and creativity on our society, and we will continue to do what we can to support the industry and call for the Government to do more.”