Look here for posts about…

Sign up for our regular website bulletin

Click here and sign up to receive our regular arts news digest by email

ArtsDevUK Partners

Arts Development UK Insurance Scheme - click for details   a-n The Artists Information Company - click for details

a-n The Artists Information Company

ADUK Conference 2016: Our Cultural Commons

Conference imageSt Andrews Halls, Norwich
23rd/24th February 2016
ADUK’s 2016 conference, in association with Voluntary Arts, explores our organisations’ joint initiative ourculturalcommons.org which sets out to explore new ways to sustain and develop the creative lives of our communities in all their diversity. The conference is hosted by Norwich City Council at the historic St Andrews Halls.

For a conference programme and brochure, click: Norwich2016ConferenceBro

Conference places are open to all with preferential rates for ADUK members. Whether you are an artist or an arts officer, an organisation or an independent consultant the ADUK conference offers thought provoking key notes, briefings and break outs on the big issues, relevant case studies and tours alongside forums for discussion and opportunities to network with arts and cultural colleagues from across the country. For ADUK members this event is CPD Certified, 5 credits for every full day’s attendance in 2016: read more at AD:UK Professional Fellowship programme.

Keynote speakers include:
• Baroness Beeban Kidron OBE, President of Voluntary Arts, film director, cross-bench peer, founder of the Film Club charity, and
• Jane Wilson, Chair of ADUK and Culture & Community Manager with Cambridge City Council
• Bobsie Robinson: Cultural Policy & Strategy Manager at Bradford Council.

Case study and discussion forum presenters include: Graham Creelman OBE, Pro-Chancellor of Norwich University of the Arts; Kate Hall, Director of Market Place; Lisa Pidgeon, Director of Little Bird SOS; Amanda Rigali, Head of Programming from Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy; Jessica Harris, Project Manager, Cultural Commissioning Programme at NCVO; Tony Witton, Arts & Cultural Services Manager at Kent CC; Abi Horsfield, Project Director at Creative Encounters; Jo Cove and Vicki Stratford at Made in Clayton West; Emily Bowman, Projects Manager; Lincolnshire One Venues; Guy O’Donnell, Sherman 5 Coordinator at the Sherman Theatre; Sarah-Jane Rawlings and Stella Duffy, co-directors of Fun Palaces; Diana Pasek-Atkinson and Peter Ptashko, UnLtd Associate.

Book now on our Arts Development UK Eventbrite page link: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/aduk-conference-our-cultural-commons-tickets-19946851570. If you prefer to be invoiced please download a  booking form here: Norwich2016ElecForm

For more information about the conference, please contact 01269 824728 or email: artsdevuk@aol.com.

Joining Arts Development UK

What is AD:UK?
Arts Development UK is a professional association for people working in arts and cultural development in England and Wales.

Its values are that AD:UK should be:ADUK-green-A-block
• Creative and collaborative
• Forward thinking and flexible
• Professional and passionate.

Who should be a member?
Anyone working in a role which encourages the development of arts and cultural activities to improve quality of life, aspiration and opportunities for people in places and communities.

This includes individuals such as artists, policy-makers, managers, officers, consultants/freelance and organisations eg community, arts, heritage, museums and libraries and local authorities.

What are the key benefits of membership?
• Access to member areas of this website with special content
• A weekly e-zine (cited as the ‘go to’ source of information for policy updates, opportunities and professional knowledge)
• Advocacy for individuals and the industry sector
• Annual conference and seminars
• CPD accreditation through the Professional Fellowship Programme
• Access to a UK-wide network of experienced professionals (Skills & Knowledge Bank)
• Up-to-the minute information and analysis
• A collective strength for the protection of arts and culture in UK society

There are many more – please follow this link for a full description of AD:UK.

How do I join AD:UK?
Members are welcomed as individuals or organisations. Membership benefits are available here:ADUK Member Benefits 2015

Membership forms for organisations are available here: Arts Development UK Organisational membership application form

Membership forms for group organisational membership are available here: Arts Development UK Group Organisational membership application form

Membership for personal membership is available here:Arts Development UK Personal membership application form

The website
Anyone can access this website as either a member or non-member of AD:UK. There is plenty of interesting content to read. However, to get the full benefit, you will need to be a paid-up AD:UK member to access all areas, such as member directories and key documents. You will need an AD:UK access key to view restricted pages which you will receive on joining AD:UK as a paid member.

You can also sign up  to receive a weekly digest of posts from this site, using the link on the left, whether you are an AD:UK member or not.

Arts Development UK AGM papers and nominations for Trustees and Regional & Welsh Coordinators

ADUK-green-A-blockThe AGM of Arts Development UK is this year taking place during the ADUK Annual Conference on Tuesday 23rd February 2016 at The Auditorium, The Forum, Millennium Plain, Norwich, NR2 1TF at 19.30. All members are warmly invited to attend.

2015/16 has been both a challenging and rewarding year for us. We have again extended our membership to a wider catchment of arts organisations and individuals and our professional fellowship programme has also gone from strength to strength. Our members continue to face challenging economic circumstances but we are pleased to report that we have been able to maintain membership numbers in 2015. We want our association to continue to have influence with policy makers and funders and have a key role in training, developing and representing our profession.

To do so we need to appoint a new National Trustees Committee, and this year the Officer positions of Chair and Secretary are open for nomination, together with 2 further Trustee appointments. Please note that the appointment of each officer is for two years.

We are also seeking the appointment (or re-appointment as incumbents can be accepted for a further 2 years of service) of half of our regional coordinator positions. These are 2 year appointments and we are requesting that half of incumbents voted in last year stay on as Regional Coordinators. This means that we are also seeking nominations for one regional coordinator in each of the following areas:
• East & West Midlands Region (2 positions are available)
• Eastern Region
• London
• North West Region
• South East Region: (2 positions are available)
• South West Region (2 positions are available)
• Yorkshire & the NE Region
• South Wales
• West & Mid Wales
• North Wales

These will be for 2-year duration and are advisory and development positions. If you wish to either stand for any position, or nominate a member for a position, please find the agenda and nomination papers here: AGM 2016 Agenda & Nominations letter 9-1-16.

I would be grateful if you could complete and return the relevant enclosed form to me on or before Friday 29th January 2016, so that nominations can be presented to the AGM on 23rd Feb. If you need information any of the positions, please contact me on 01269 824728 or email ADUK on artsdevUK@aol.com. I look forward to seeing you at the Conference & AGM in February in Norwich.
Yours Sincerely

Pete Bryan Administrator and Company Secretary of ADUK

ADUK Response to the DCMS White Paper

ADUK-green-A-blockADUK have responded to the DCMS White Paper consultation on the proposals for a new, far-reaching cultural strategy, the first in 50 years, reflecting the world today. Jane Wilson. Chair of ADUK writes:

“Arts Development UK is a membership organisation, representing over 350 arts development professionals based mainly in England and Wales. Our members work across local government and arts and cultural organisations, as well as in specialist arts development companies. Our vision is to see the arts thrive in all local communities, working with and through the arts to meet local needs, challenges, and ambitions. Our role is to support our members through professional development, information and advocacy; and through our members we provide a national network of locally focused arts activity.

We very much welcome this consultation and recognize the importance of all four themes. We will argue that there is a real need for a national strategy to support the themes, one which is in no way proscriptive and which recognizes the critical importance of devolved decision-making, but which makes clear the vital role that arts and culture play in the relationships between people and place. These relationships are well established, with an increasing body of evidence, recently documented by both Arts Council England and the Warwick Commission, and we expect that there will be a large number of submissions covering specific examples of good practice.

Therefore, what we want to bring to the fore in our submission is the critical importance of local cultural infrastructure and the mechanisms that develop and maintain that infrastructure. Over the past year we have been working closely with Voluntary Arts on Our Cultural Commons, a structured discussion exploring the ways in which local communities are developing their own arts and cultural environment. We started this work to address the challenges we have seen developing from the continuing reduction of local authority engagement with arts and culture.

We know from our own annual investment survey, and knowledge of our own membership, that local authorities have been reducing both their financial investment and their staffing in relation to arts and culture. To date this has been most marked in rural districts and market towns, but is also now affecting larger urban areas and our major cities. This has had two related but separate effects.

Firstly, local authorities were one of the most significant funders of arts and culture, whether through directly managed provision, contracts, or grant aid. Collectively, they still make a major financial contribution to the sector, but coverage is patchy, with significant geographies entirely without local authority funding. Some of the reductions in funding have registered on the national consciousness, especially when they affected larger scale professional organisations, but much remains under the radar. As this change is taking place across multiple authorities, and beyond the active purview of Arts Council England, who have a focus on their national portfolio organisations, there has been very little work to understand the cumulative impact of this change on small scale and voluntary arts activity. Activity at this level is responsible for the majority of public involvement in arts and culture (see for example Our Creative Talent, research carried out by Voluntary Arts on behalf of the DCMS). It largely exists without regular public funding, but does draw on smaller scale community focused funding and support. One of the questions Our Cultural Commons wanted to address has been how local communities have responded to this change, and whether there was learning that could be shared nationally.

The other impact of local authority withdrawal from arts and culture has been the loss of the specialist knowledge and leadership provided by local authority officers. Again, the cumulative impact of this change has not been fully monitored, however we have identified two main areas of risk.

The first is the removal of internal advocacy for arts and culture with local authorities. This has its most immediate impact in that removal of funding described above, but also affects every other point at which arts and culture interacts with local government. The most pertinent example for this consultation relates to planning. Despite the inclusion of cultural well-being within the National Planning Policy Framework, without specialist internal knowledge there remain significant barriers before local plans sufficiently articulate the practical steps needed to include the cultural infrastructure that underpin the development, not only of professional organisations, but also the smaller scale and voluntary arts activity that is so essential to the wellbeing of communities. This has little immediate impact, but, as with any other sector, the longer term health and success of arts and culture absolutely depends on having the right physical infrastructure in place.

This brings us to the second main area of risk. The arts and cultural sector has responded very well to calls to demonstrate its relevance and value to the wider needs of our communities. The evidence for the important role arts and cultural engagement plays in formal and lifelong education, in health, in social and community cohesion, is now well documented. However changing public policy is not just a process of producing valid evidence, but also bringing that evidence to the attention of policy makers. The arts and cultural sector is dominated by small organisations, many of which are charities or social enterprises. They do not have the individual time or resources to take that message through to policy makers clearly and consistently. Where there are local authority officers tasked with place making and familiar with the arts and cultural sector, good progress is being made, as it is also in the relatively small number of locations with cultural organisations of sufficient scale to develop their own high level strategic partnerships (notably within our largest cities), but again, in large areas of the country, this work is not taking place, and the opportunity to place culture and creativity as a cost effective and multi-faceted route to effective communities risks being lost.

We do not argue that there should be a return to high levels of investment in directly delivered activity, local authorities are not in a position to do so, and the creative and cultural sector is arguably better served through a genuine plurality of delivery.

However, we do argue that there is a need for local authorities to remain engaged with culture, and in particular to recognise and use their skills to support and maintain local culture infrastructure, as they do for other essential infrastructure. We suggest that this is best articulated through a high level national strategy, which sets out a small number of areas for action, and against which progress in local areas can be assessed.

Working with Voluntary Arts, through a series of national and regional round-tables conducted as part of Our Cultural Commons, we have identified four key requirements for successful local cultural infrastructure:

1. Local people who inspire and lead – those ‘creative citizens’ who, beyond their own participation and beyond any remuneration, give their time to make such activity more available within their communities (of locality and interest) and to improve the quality and range of those opportunities and activities

2. Spaces and places for people to meet and do things – whether these are village halls, community centres, activity rooms in care homes, school rooms in the evenings, or function rooms in local pubs

3. Recognition of the links between creative cultural activity and wellbeing– this activity makes important contributions to improving the learning, health, wellbeing, confidence and quality of life for our communities, but the scale and importance of this activity often goes unrecognised

4. Platforms for celebration and appreciation of the arts and culture of others and a feeling within all our communities that we have a right to share our voice – cultural expression is an individual right and supports a better understanding of our own and others’ identities

We have also identified a number of actions in support of these requirements, which could provide the basis of a national approach to local cultural infrastructure. These actions provide a coherent framework at the same time as allowing the space for locally appropriate and specific actions to develop:

1 A programme of skills development for creative citizens (voluntary and paid) to build capacity in relation to asset management, regulatory compliance etc.

2. A joined-up approach to asset redevelopment, management and transfer to ensure there are spaces and places for cultural activity in every community

3. Cross-departmental policy co-ordination – ensuring the right enabling conditions across education, local government, economic development etc.

4. Nationwide initiatives for the promotion of diverse local collaborations across the full diversity of creative cultural activity within communities.
5. Increased subsidiarity in decision making and strengthening local democracy to allow greater leadership at community level (e.g. regarding ownership of or access to buildings)

6. Sustained and strategic investment in local cultural infrastructure in communities across the country and the provision of micro-financing for local collaborative initiatives

7.Consistent nationwide longitudinal measuring of levels of participation in creative cultural activity and national showcasing of exemplary local cultural activities

8. A nationwide programme to tackle inequalities within local communities through collaborative cultural initiatives

They also identify actions most effectively carried out a national level: specifically in relation to the DCMS itself we would draw attention to 3. (above), and the need for effective cross-departmental policy co-ordination. Without wanting to create a list, right now we look to the DCMS to make the case for cultural education and its place within the national curriculum. We very much welcomed the recently launched Arts Council England Cultural Education Challenge and see Cultural Education Partnerships very much as exemplifying the kind of approach we are suggesting through Our Cultural Commons: a high level national framework enabling effective locally contextualized action. However, this excellent initiative is at odds with the significant challenges to arts subjects at GCSE, and although our members are working hard to bring together local partnerships, the work to ensure that schools are fully supported to take part has to take place at a national level.

Finally, turning to the last element of the consultation, cultural diplomacy. This is not the primary territory for our members, however every internationally recognized cultural institution, performance or exhibition, has its roots in those local communities. Ensuring that we have a vibrant local cultural infrastructure means that we also have the bedrock from which the individuals and companies behind our internationally valued culture emerge.
Jane Wilson
Chair of ADUK

Cultural Commissioning Programme

Cultural-Commissioning-Programme_with-straplineThe Cultural Commissioning Programme works with the arts and cultural sector, commissioners and policy makers to strengthen commissioning of arts and culture, to deliver better outcomes for people and communities. The programme is managed by the NCVO with financial support from ACE, and has recently updated their website with a range of new resources for arts and cultural organisations and public service commissioners to help with:

• Understanding the opportunities to commission arts and cultural providers to deliver outcomes
• Getting to grips with practicalities, including:
• partnering with others
• finding who to talk to locally
• finding local tenders
• measuring impact, including:
· Sourcing evidence to show the value of arts and cultural provision
· Understanding the national policy context
· Inspiring projects and case studies
The Cultural Commissioning Programme (www.ncvo.org/CCProg), funded by Arts Council England, is delivered by a partnership of National Council for Voluntary Organisations (lead), New Economics Foundation and New Philanthropy Capital. Sign up here to stay informed: https://www.ncvo.org.uk/cultural-commissioning-programme-emails

ADUK National Seminar on Arts, Health & Wellbeing

Capture slide imageMany thanks to all of you who attended the Arts Development UK National Seminar on 1st December in Cardiff. Feedback to date indicates that it was a very informative day. We will be putting various presentations on the ADUK website over the next few weeks (in the Resources section), and I will keep you informed of progress. I would particularly like to thank Clive Parkinson, Director of Arts for Health at Manchester Met University and one of our keynote presenters for sending us a link to you-tube where his presentation can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt6O3Xlsk90

Delegates and other members may be interested in reading “Exploring the Longitudinal Relationship Between Arts Engagement & Health” written by Dr Rebecca Gordon Nesbitt, and references by Clive in his presentation, which can be found here: http://www.artsforhealth.org/research/artsengagementandhealth/

Finally, Clive has also suggested that delegates and members who may be interested in the Arts, Health & Wellbeing agenda visit https://longitudinalhealthbenefits.wordpress.com. The site contains a number of important and interesting original research reports.

Autumn Spending Review

WestminsterIn a most welcome move from the Treasury, the Chancellor has announced in the Autumn Spending Review that arts funding will be protected from cuts, declaring that culture is one of the “best investments we can make”. Funding for Arts Council England (ACE) and the national museums and galleries will not fall in cash terms until at least 2019-20. This results in a small increase in cash terms of approximately £10m per annum for the four years up to 2019/20 for ACE. The DCMS received an overall cut of 5%, to include a 20% cut to its core administration budget. This allays fears that funding could be cut by up to 40%.

Announcing the Spending Review, Osborne said that £1bn in DCMS funds generate £250bn for the economy, making arts and culture among “the best investments we can make”. “Deep cuts in the small budget of the Department of Culture, Media and Sport are a false economy,” he said. Osborne will also consider a new tax relief for museums and galleries, and has committed to protecting the free entry policy.

The DCLG will make “overall resource savings” of 29% over four years “through better financial management and further efficiency”. The local government grant will be reduced by £6.1bn, from £11.5bn in 2015-16 to £5.4bn in 2019-20, which the Local Government Association (LGA) says will have serious consequences for council services although Osborne was eager to assure the public that, thanks to devolved power and the abolishment of the uniform business rate, local government spending will not decrease.

Sir Peter Bazalgette, Chair of Arts Council England said; “This is an astonishing settlement for arts and culture. The very strong case made by the Arts Council and the sector, supported by DCMS ministers, for the huge benefit arts and culture deliver to our quality of life, our society and our creative economy has been recognised by the Chancellor. This settlement means we can keep up our efforts to ensure everyone, everywhere in England benefits from Arts Council money. We can continue to invest in children and young people, disadvantaged communities and new talent as well as hundreds of much loved arts and cultural institutions.

“We now need to understand the settlement for Local Authorities. Our team across the country will be having place by place conversations. We cannot replace their revenue but we’ll keep investing where Local Authorities keep faith with culture.”

Arts Development UK Members Survey 2015

ADUK-green-A-blockWe would like you to help us improve our services, so we’d be grateful if you’d find the time to fill in our Members Survey for 2015. As an extra incentive, we’re running a prize draw with the offer of a free place at one of our National Seminars in 2016 (only completed questionnaires will be valid).

In order to monitor how effective our services have been to the membership, we are seeking members’ views on our range of activities and would appreciate your help in suggesting improvements for the future.

The questionnaire should take no more than 10 minutes to complete and will give us invaluable information so that we can continually improve and provide services that meet your needs.

Please click https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/members_survey_2015 to begin the survey.

Booking is now open for the Arts Development UK National Seminar: Arts, Health & Wellbeing

Capture slide image

Venue: St David’s Hall, Cardiff

Date: Tuesday 1st December 2015

This next national seminar in our professional development programme is aimed at officers involved in both policy and practice related to arts, health and wellbeing commissioning and service provision. Our training needs survey and previous seminar feedback indicated that arts officers across both England and Wales who are engaged in and keen to learn more this area of work. It will also assist health professionals to learn more about the benefits of applying arts and cultural participation to improve health and wellbeing.

The seminar will illustrate best practice arts services in both England and Wales, giving delegates networking opportunities and an opportunity to take part in a series of activities illustrating arts, health and wellbeing. The seminar will demonstrate how working through arts participation, individuals, organisations and communities can increase participation and access to health and wellbeing; also increasing confidence and ability, community development and social cohesion, and bringing groups of disadvantaged or hard to reach people to increase their quality of life. The day will allow delegates to hear about policy and practice from a range of informed speakers and presenters from Wales and England.

The morning will include keynote presentations followed by a series of breakout sessions with presenters drawn from good practice case studies from a national prospective with opportunities for debate and information sharing. The day is aimed at arts and cultural organisations, artists, those in the health, wellbeing and social care sectors, local and national government policy makers, and those working in the voluntary and independent sectors. We very much hope that you will be able to join us for an enlightening and informative day that should enable you to support better cultural practice and delivery with communities in your own areas.

Please note that you can book this year using Eventbrite by clicking: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/arts-development-uk-arts-health-and-wellbeing-national-seminar-tickets-18991772904 if you wish to pay by credit card. If you prefer to be invoiced, download the programme and electronic booking form. and complete and return by post or by email (but if sending electronically, please remember to save the file as something else as the file is read only). The programme and booking form is also available in Welsh by request to artsdevuk@aol.com.

Please reserve the date in your diaries now. For more information about the event please contact Pete Bryan, Arts Development UK Administrator on artsdevuk@aol.com or tel 01269 824728.

This event is supported by the Arts Council of Wales.

ADUK South Wales Meeting

ADUK-green-A-blockFor your diaries – the next meeting will be held on Thursday September 17th at Newbridge Memo (http://www.newbridgememo.co.uk/en/your-visit/) 10am for a 10:30am start. Thank you to Helen Harman at Newbridge Memo (and new members of AD:uk) for kindly hosting the meeting and an agenda and minutes from the last meeting will follow shortly.

Verity and I look forward to seeing you there!
Kind Regards,
Caroline O’Neill: Regional Coordinator: South Wales. Caroline.A.O’Neill@rctcbc.gov.uk