Sunday, January 10, 2010

Grants for new niche festivals in Birmingham

Birmingham City Council is inviting applications for grant support for new independent or niche festivals in Birmingham. This new funding stream is called the Emerging Festivals Fund

This is part of a programme of work to grow and support Birmingham’s festivals. Our ambition is to have a year round calendar of festivals.

Grants for new niche festival are available between £500 to £4,999.

The funding is being provided through the Birmingham Cultural Partnership which is part of Be Birmingham (Local Strategic Partnership). Birmingham City Council’s Art Service is administrating these funds.

The key objectives of the Emerging Festivals Fund are:
· To support emerging festivals (ie those which are new or in their second or third year of presenting a festival), where they can demonstrate the potential to become niche events which will contribute significantly to economic impact, visitor numbers or media profile for Birmingham by
· improved quality and quantity of artistic programme
· audience development especially amongst groups which are under-represented amongst arts festival audiences (ie black and minority ethnic audiences and disabled people, people living in Birmingham’s priority neighbourhoods)

An applicant organisation must:
· be constituted as a not-for-profit company;
· be based in Birmingham;
· provide high quality Arts based festival activity in Birmingham – music, theatre, dance, visual art, craft, literature, new media
· which is of more than one day’s duration
· have a turnover of no more than £49,999 (festivals larger than this can apply to Arts Council England’s Grants for the Arts, Birmingham City Council project funding or through the LAA programme for Challenge Funding
· have policies for Equalities and safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults which meet the minimum standards required by BCC;
· provide audited accounts for two previous financial years;
· submit the application and all supporting documentation required by 4pm on Thursday 4th February 2010

All applications must be sent to Julie A Sutton, Administrator, Arts Team, Birmingham City Council, BMAG, Chamberlain Square, Birmingham B3 3DH at ( by 4pm on Thursday 4th February 2010.

Potential applicants are strongly advised to seek a surgery (1hr) with the Project Manager on Monday 25th January before submitting their project proposal.

Click on the links below for more information.

Background information -

Funding guidance -

Application form -

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Grit bins and gritting in Moseley and Kings Heath shopping centres

I’ve been contacted by a number of residents on two issues:

1) 1) When does the Council refill empty grit bins? This is particularly problematic at the moment, since a number of bins have emptied very quickly in the present weather.

2) 2) Is the Council supposed to grit the pavements in Moseley shopping centre?

In answer to these two questions, the Council’s Highways department have provided me with the following answer:

Grit bins
All 1034 grit bins throughout the City are being refilled on a rolling program. Unfortunately with such a vast number of units and continuing severe weather we cannot maintain all grit bins in a full state at all times. These difficulties are being compounded by the emptying of the bins almost as soon as we have refilled them, often for private use. Resources in terms of manpower and rock salt are not infinite and therefore we would ask that residents are patient and use the facilities in a sustainable manner. Nevertheless, we will continue with our refill programs throughout this cold weather period. Empty grit bins can be reported to Highways Enquiries on 303 6644 but as explained above we are aware and are refilling.

Pavements in Moseley shopping centre
Whilst the footways in the city centre are treated on a regular basis with the carriageways, those in Moseley and 20 further shopping centres (including Kings Heath shopping centre) are treated on a reactionary basis when conditions are extremely poor and the resources allow. Extremely poor conditions would mean where snow is lying for more than 24 hours or where the ground is sub-zero for in excess of 48 hours. Nevertheless, these conditions are still subject to resources which will only be diverted to this work once the priority gritted network is clear and we are confident it will remain so. In the current situation our resources are at full capacity dealing with the continuing snow and extremely low road surface temperatures.