Creative Civic Fund

Status:  Open to applications

Application Deadline: 28th September, 2018


Grants and other support are available for 10 local communities across England that are using the arts and creativity to make positive change in their community.

Maximum Value: £ 300,000
Minimum Value: £ 50,000

Value Notes

Grants of between £50,000 and £300,000 per area over three years as well as other support, such as advice and mentoring, are available.

At least 10 community groups will be selected.

Please note this is not a standard grant-giving programme and may not suit proposals that are already developed and simply seking funding.

Extended Description

The Creative Civic Fund is a new programme provided by the Big Lottery Fund, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and Local Trust working in partnership.

The programme is looking to support at least 10 communities across England that are using the arts and creativity to make positive social change in their local areas.

There are three stages to the Creative Civic Change programme:

  • Community call out – where local communities can indicate if they want to take part in the programme's development (the deadline to return all required information is 28 September 2018).
  • Development phase - co-designing the programme with the partners and the selected local communities (at least 10 areas; autumn 2018 – spring 2019).
  • Programme delivery – the local areas which are successful will be funded and supported to go on and deliver their programmes over up to three years, with the knowledge being recorded and shared.

Latest Information

The deadline for returning the information during the community call out phase is 28 September 2018.

Key Criteria

Local communities in England can apply.

In this case, the term ‘community groups’ refers to groups that are organised and run by members of the community and are working for the public benefit) in England (including five Big Local areas). These areas will already have some experience of how important the arts and creativity can be in getting people involved and enthusiastic about making positive change locally.

Local could mean anything from a few streets or part of an estate, to a neighbourhood or a cluster of villages (but it must be an area smaller than a local authority).

The programme is looking for expressions of interest from those who are already part of the Big Local initiative, and those who are not but share similar characteristics.

There is particular interest in local communities in England which have often been overlooked for funding in the past, and may face some or all of these issues:

  • The decline of local industry
  • High levels of unemployment
  • A pressing need for services or activities
  • A high proportion of children in poverty
  • People in the area in poor health relative to the general population
  • Other characteristics that demonstrate need.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • Be a community group or community organisation.
  • Be constituted.
  • Have a committee.
  • Have a bank account.

Eligible Expenditure 

The programme will support selected communities to use the arts and creativity to make positive change in their local area.

Communities are expected to take the lead and set out their priorities.

Whatever their local priorities, the programme will help them to use the arts and creativity to achieve them, whether that is:

  • Social and community issues, like isolation or lack of engagement.
  • Bringing local streets to life, or improving the physical environment.
  • Supporting skills, training or local business development.
  • Giving people a voice.
  • Celebrating local culture.
  • It could be a combination of these or something entirely different.

Arts and creativity might include but are not limited to knitting, singing, drama, dancing, pottery, sewing, writing stories or poems, storytelling, making jewellery, animation, making music, coding, photography (including Instagramming), woodcraft, gardening, cake decorating, film making, community radio, putting on festivals, parades and more.

Match Funding Restrictions

Cash match funding is not required.


The following are not eligible for funding:

  • Individuals
  • Local authorities
  • Organisations that do not represent the interests of local communities and are not community based.

Application Procedure

Further information, including the briefing document and FAQs, can be found on the Local Trust website.

Contact the Local Trust for further information.

Addresses and contacts

Application forms may be available to download their website.
Contact details:
Programme Co-ordinator
Local Trust 
CAN Mezzanine 
7-14 Great Dover Street 
020 3588 0564