Sheffield theatres welcome £240,000 catalyst for fundraising

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SHEFFIELD Theatres have received a £240,000 boost from a new Arts Council kitty designed to help organisations develop their fundraising expertise.

The Catalyst fund also aims to help arts groups come with creative and innovative ways to generate new income.

The Crucible and Lyceum theatres are both seeing their income from the Arts Council cut in real terms over the next three years, due to the impact of inflation.

Plans to invest the new money include setting up an arts fundraiser trainee scheme which will provide support for Sheffield Theatres.

Two new experts in the field will be taken on, while new initiatives will take the theatres’ work to areas where there is little tradition of theatregoing.

A campaign to encourage donations will be launched along with a new ambassador scheme for previous cast and creative professionals. Catalyst funds will be released over the course of the next three years with specific match-funding targets in place each year.

Sheffield Theatres has committed to generate over £200,000 from private donations as part of its fundraising plan.

Chief executive Dan Bates said: “It is fantastic that the Arts Council has recognised our ambitions for Sheffield Theatres’ fundraising activity.

“The vision we have expressed in our application reflects our passion for producing bold and exciting work in the region that’s of national and international significance and our commitment to securing a sustainable future for Sheffield Theatres and a lasting legacy for the arts sector.

“I am looking forward to leading the organisation over the next three years as we embark on this exciting new chapter in our history.”

Catalyst is a new £100 million programme aimed at helping cultural organisations diversify their income streams and access more funding from private sources.