ACE unveils funding for national programmes

Additional funding for V&A Purchase Grant Fund and subject specialist networks
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Rebecca Atkinson
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Arts Council England (ACE) has announced its funding allocations for Renaissance national programmes in 2012-13, including an increase for the V&A Purchase Grant Fund and the PRISM fund.

Renaissance national programmes amount to about £2.5m per year, with budgets set each financial year. In 2012-13, ACE will increase funding for the V&A Purchase Grant Fund from £600,000 to £750,000.

The PRISM fund will receive £250,000 in the next financial year, up from £150,000 in 2011-12.

Subject specialist networks will also see their funding increase from £120,000 to £150,000, with the annual fund open to applications from 1 May.

And Designation development funding, which will be open to applications in late May, has also been increased to £700,000 from £300,000. About £300,000 will be used to fund the management of the Accreditation scheme.

ACE says it will also continue to fund the Collections Trust and Culture24, although it is still negotiating funding allocations. Kids in Museums will receive “ongoing support”.

Althea Ethunshile, chief operating officer at ACE, said: “I’m pleased to be announcing such comprehensive support for our Renaissance national programmes, which I know are valued by museums across the country.

“Together with the other parts of Renaissance, they will help to develop the museum experience for audiences, allowing their unique collections to be discovered by even more people.”

Martin Roth, director of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, said the increase in funding  for the V&A Purchase Grant Fund was “tremendous news”.

And John Orna-Ornstein, head of London and national programmes at the British Museum, said: “Subject specialist networks are an important means of maintaining and developing skills and knowledge across the sector for public benefit.

“I am delighted that ACE has made a positive decision to support such networks as part of a wider effort to ensure that the sector has access to the variety of expertise it needs.”

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