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Welcome to Arts Development UK!

Arts Development UK is a professional association, with a membership drawn from local authorities and those working in the creative industries sector in England and Wales.

Our website functions in a WordPress environment, which allows much more member involvement, especially if you sign up to the site to use the various user interfaces (at the top of the site page area, once you have enrolled). Being a member also allows you to contact members who are also signed in to the site at the same time as you.

The site is packed with all the latest news and information, but the real benefits come from registering.  Just click the “Register” link in the Login area on the right-hand side to get started. A whole new range of networking opportunities become available on the user tool bar when you log in…. and there is also an induction pack for all new members. Your password and user name will be specific to you and is your choice. Please remember to use lower case letters when you enrol.

The site operates on different levels, depending on your status. Anyone can view the site, but to interact with it you will need to enrol. Some information (for instance the member directory, information on funding and certain parts of the CPD and Training pages and services) will be restricted to Arts Development UK members-only and for this, you will need to become a member of Arts Development UK. Why not join us today!

AD:uk/NCVO National Seminar Programme on Cultural Commissioning

Cultural Commissioning Seminars - click for details

1st seminar: London (Camden Centre) on Friday 6th June 2014: Chaired by Robin Simpson (Voluntary Arts)

2nd seminar: Cast Doncaster on Tuesday 10th June 2014. Chaired by Jane Wilson (Chair of AD:uk)

The public service landscape has changed. Services are increasingly delivered through commissioning and commissioners are looking for improved outcomes. Many are also looking for services which help local communities build resilience, as part of preventative strategies to enable resource management at a time of reducing budgets. 

Arts and cultural organisations equally face financial pressures as grant aid diminishes. Many are looking to develop alternative income sources through delivering public service contracts, and to use creative skills and cultural approaches to deliver public service outcomes.  

This series of two national seminars bring together arts and cultural organisations and public service commissioners to explore ways in which arts and culture can deliver effective public service outcomes. Whether you are from the arts and cultural sector, or are a commissioner, they will help you:

  • Understand how arts and cultural organisations can work creatively with individuals and communities to tackle social issues and challenges
  • Discover innovative artistic and cultural practice which engages people, and helps deliver better health, wellbeing and stronger communities
  • Develop networks to increase your effectiveness in cultural commissioning for better outcomes.

The seminars feature:

  • Key note speeches by leaders in the arts & cultural sector and in strategic commissioning
  • Practical examples of commissioning cultural programmes to deliver better outcomes in mental health & wellbeing, older people, places and communities
  • Peer to peer learning on cross-cutting issues, including: collaborative working; demonstrating impact; engaging users in service design; relationship between high artistic / cultural quality and public service delivery. 

Speakers confirmed include:

  • Vikki Haywood, Chair of the RSA
  • Carole Wood, Director of Public Health, Gateshead Council
  • Paul McGarry, Senior Strategy Manager, Public Health Manchester
  • Linden Rowley, Consultant
  • Sally Bagwell, NPC Research

Arts organisations, museums, libraries and archives that want to develop know-how and networks for engaging in commissioning will benefit from these seminars. So will commissioners working in health, public health, adult social care, children and families, community cohesion, regeneration and education who want better outcomes and better engagement with target communities.    

The national seminar programme is a joint initiative between the Cultural Commissioning Programme (CCP),Arts Development UK and the National Culture & Leisure Forum.  It is supported by The National Archives. CCP is an Arts Council England funded programme to help the arts and cultural sector engage in public sector commissioning and to support a greater awareness amongst public service commissioners of the potential for arts and culture to deliver their outcomes.  Sign up to stay informed at:  http://www.ncvo.org.uk/cultural-commissioning-programme-emails.

A detailed programme and booking form is available here: Cultural Commissioning Seminar programme and booking form

For more information, please contact artdsevuk@aol.com.

National Seminar on Cultural Commissioning in June

Cultural-Commissioning-Programme_with-straplineLogoArts Development UK are partnering with the NCVO Cultural Commissioning Programme to develop 2 new Cultural Commissioning Seminars to take place in June 2014. The Seminar Programme will be in association with the National Leisure and Culture Forum.

We intend to hold one seminar in London (at the Camden Centre on 6th June 2014) and one in the north of England (at Cast in Doncaster on 10th June 2014).

The programme is being confirmed and should be available by the end of March and case studies will illustrate  both Commissioning and Commissioned perspectives.

The purpose of the seminar is to promote good practice and to focus cultural organisations on the potential of future commissioning practice in non-cultural sectors. The seminar programme is aimed at local authorities (commissioning officers and cultural services), arts, libraries and museums services and independent organisations, and artists and others involved in the cultural sector. For further information about the seminar programme, please contact artsdevuk@aol.com.

Join ADUK now for 2014/15 – fees frozen at last year’s levels

April 2014 sees the start of Arts Development UK’s new membership year and we are pleased to announced the membership fees have been fixed at last year’s levels.

Meaning that:

  • Personal membership for individuals working in the arts or creative industries can join at £80+VAT (£96 total)
  • Standard Organisational membership is just £175 + VAT (£210) for organisations  through a named officer
  • Group Organisational membership is available where more than one person in an organisation wants to join: Group membership for up to 5 named officers is £275 + VAT (£330) and for up to 10 named officers is £300 + VAT (£360)
  • Students and people in between jobs can join for £42 + VAT (£50.40)

Group Organisational Membership offers the best value for money for larger organisations where more than one person wants to become a member,  saving £75+VAT on two standard organisational memberships.

Becoming an AD:UK member gets you access to:

Professional development opportunities

  • Development of skills and professional competencies
  • Structured Induction & Buddying programmes
  • A Professional Fellowship Programme available to all members
  • A new Skills and Knowledge Bank, with opportunities for skills and knowledge exchange


  • Regional Groups, which offer support, study visits, information and skills exchange
  • Opportunities to gain valuable management experience
  • A major annual conference and national seminar programme – this year’s national conference will be taking place at Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff on 16th & 17th October and members are able to register at a discounted rate.

Research, Information & knowledge resources

  • The weekly E-Zine with headline news and a weekly assessment of fundraising and grants available for the sector (which may otherwise cost over £200 in individual subscriptions to external sources)
  • A growing range of IT based information and knowledge resources including our web-site: www.artsdevelopmentuk.org with a wide variety of information resources, Twitter and Facebook feeds and on-line forums to exchange news and views.

We also organise the annual national local authority arts investment survey which is a national indicator for the state of the sector and useful lobbying tool.

If you want to find out more about member benefits you can download the 2014 Arts Development UK Membership Benefits form or get in touch at artsdevuk@aol.com

AD:uk London Regional Meeting

LogoWednesday 2 April from 2-5pm
Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, 50 Hoxton Square, London N1 6PB
Arts Development UK’s London branch will be holding its next meeting on Wednesday 2 April from 2-5pm. It will be held at the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation’s offices in Hoxton Square, not far from Old Street station. The programme includes:

  • 2pm for 2.15pm start
  • 2.15-2.30pm Update on Arts Dev UK (Gina Gillam/Chris Gibbon, ADUK London region’s co-ordinators)
  • 2.30-3.15pm Jessica Harris, Cultural Commissioning Programme Manager, NCVO, talking about the cultural commissioning programme
  • 3.15-3.45pm Break for tea and coffee
  • 3.45-4.30pm John McMahon, Museums, Libraries and Heritage Adviser, A New Direction, talking about AND’s work as London’s bridge organisation
  • 4.30-4.45pm Arts Dev UK wrap-up

We would be delighted if you could join us and please let us know if you wish to attend (it’s free for members). For further information please contact: Chris Gibbon, Senior Consultant with BOP at 020 7780 7298/07719 932 631 or email: chris@bop.co.uk

AD:uk Yorkshire, Humberside & NE Regional Meeting

Logo2nd April at Cast, Waterdale, Doncaster DN1 3BU

The next Arts Development UK Yorkshire, Humberside and NE regional meeting and ADO Forum (and please note that NE members are invited to attend) will take place on 2 April. As previous, this meeting will be split into two sections, with guest speakers in both halves.  The first half will be a closed meeting for ADuk members, and the second half will be open to all Arts Development Officers. We have arranged for Cast to give ADuk members a tour of their new facilities, which will start at 11am.  The ADuk meeting will take place from 12pm and the ADO Forum from 2pm.  As an ADuk member you are invited to attend the full session; please bring your own lunch to eat during the meeting. ACE will be in attendance at this meeting and provide a full update to members. We will distribute an agenda and confirmation of times early next month, but please make a note of this in your diaries.

Best wishes,

Mary & Portia


AD:uk Eastern Regional Meeting

Tuesday 29th April
Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge
A date and venue for a regional gathering of AD:uk members has Logobeen arranged for Tuesday 29 April at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge. We are likely to start late morning at approximately 11.30 – and go through to mid afternoon. Lunch will be provided. If there are any topics you’d like covered, or speakers you wish to hear from, please let us know. We expect to have an update from Arts Council England and hope to have a speaker from the AD:uk Conference. A full agenda will follow soon.
For further information please contact:
Roxie Curry: Arts Development Officer, Rochford District Council. T: 01702 318171, E: Roxie.Curry@Rochford.gov.uk  or
Marion Catlin, Consultant & Director: The Shift Norwich, T: 07946 261651, E: info@theshiftnorwich.org.uk

Voluntary Arts Week – the countdown begins

1257461_M04This year’s Voluntary Arts Week will take place from 9 to 18 May – so it’s time to think about how you could get involved! Voluntary Arts Week is an annual celebration of cultural creativity. It’s a way of showcasing what’s already happening across the UK and Republic of Ireland – and encouraging others to join in.

What could you do? Are you part of a group? Then why not show others what you do? Hold an open rehearsal or ’come and try’ session. This year, we have two exciting projects to get involved with:
•    CraftBomb – decorate your area in colourful craft! Get together with fellow crafters to turn your local parks and buildings into a riot of colour.
•    Flashmob – bring a smile to people’s faces by bursting into song, dance or any kind of performance when people least expect it.

How can you find out more?
The Voluntary Arts Week website is currently being updated. When it’s ready, you can add your own events, check out what others are doing, and download resources such as the CraftBomb and Flashmob packs to help you plan your event. Keep up to date on Twitter @volartsweek.  Read more at: http://www.voluntaryartsweek.org/

Budget statement

Theatre, ballet, dance and opera productions will be able to claim up to 25% tax relief from September as a result of Wednesday’s Budget. Chancellobritish-moneyr George Osborne announced two rates of relief, 25% for touring production and 20% for others, available to both commercial and subsidised companies. There is also to be further tax relief for museum-quality arts gifts, and £120m for repair of cathedrals. The government’s cultural gift scheme that encourages owners to gift important works of art to the nation in return for tax reduction is to have its limit raised from £30m to £40m. A formula devised by the Treasury and Arts Council England working with the theatre industry is to be published shortly, with legislation taking effect in the autumn, with a training programme and advice available on how to benefit from the new tax credit scheme.

Arts Council England to fund research into evidencing the impact of arts & culture

ACEArts Council England (ACE) has announced it will launch a research grants programme this autumn after a new report revealed gaps in the evidence for the impact of arts and culture on the economy, society, education, and health and wellbeing. The Value of Arts and Culture to People and Society report is a review of the research and evidence already available that demonstrate the importance of arts and culture on society. But the report acknowledges that most of the studies reviewed “cannot establish causality between arts and culture and the wider societal impacts”. It says there is a need for larger sample sizes, longitudinal studies and experimental methods.

ACE will launch a research grants programme in the autumn and is calling for cultural organisations and others to develop research proposals that will improve the evidence base. More details on the programme will be available in due course. The arts council said it would also be commissioning research into equality and diversity issues across the sector, and whether arts and cultural policy disadvantages some socio-economic groups.