ACE launches library funding scheme

ACE launches library funding scheme

Arts Council England (ACE) has launched a £1.3m funding stream to support libraries, with ten grants available.

The Enterprising Libraries project is being funded by ACE, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and the British Library.

ACE is investing £300,000 into the scheme, while DCLG will provide £600,000 and the British Library £367,000.

The money is aimed at funding projects which see libraries work to bring their local communities together, and act as catalysts of local economic growth and enterprise. It takes as its basis the Business & IP Centre in London, developed by the British Library, which supports small businesses and entrepreneurs. Its model is being spread to six other city libraries around the UK.

It is hoped the money will be used to help libraries develop and support workshops and seminars, advice around intellectual property, networking events, shadowing and mentoring schemes and information resources. Ten awards of a maximum of £45,000 will be available. It is hoped that successful projects will begin in September 2013.

The Enterprising Libraries project is one of five funding streams, aimed at different sections of the arts.

Alan Davey, chief executive of ACE, said: "The funds announced today are so important because they can help artists, arts and cultural organisations to demonstrate what arts and culture can really do for this country. From supporting deaf and disabled artists to make truly innovative art that challenges the public’s perception of disability, to demonstrating how public libraries can play a huge role in supporting their local economies, the arts are truly transformative."