Events Industry Support Fund announced for Scotland

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The Christmas Market On Slessor Gardens, Dundee Credit: VisitScotland / Kenny Lam

Yesterday (Monday 24 August) the details of a £6 million fund to help the events sector recover from the COVID-19 pandemic was announced. The Events Industry Support Fund will comprise of a one-off grant of £10,000 to support businesses in the events industry, particularly those in the supply chain that are facing hardship and will be awarded as they are received. 

We’re delivering the fund with our EventScotland team on behalf of the Scottish Government, with development input from the newly formed Event Industry Advisory Group (EIAG). The funding was announced as part of a £10 million package of support on 26 July by Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Fair Work and Culture to help the events industry, parts of which are not yet able to reopen, and those which can are operating with limited numbers and other changes in light of the pandemic. This will help to ensure that these businesses are able to support the delivery of events in Scotland as we recover from coronavirus. 

This fund will support businesses which have not received Scottish Government sponsored COVID-related funding from other schemes and which meet the eligibility criteria. This includes suppliers working to organise, stage and deliver business and meetings, incentives, conferences, exhibitions (MICE) events and/or cultural and sporting events and festivals in Scotland, which are open to the public.

Applications for the fund will open from noon on Monday 31 August 2020 until noon on Monday 14 September 2020. Read the full details on the application process and requirements.

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We know the events sector has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and whilst we have set out indicative dates for a staged return of the industry, difficulties will continue for a long time to come.

This funding is the result of close collaboration with the sector to work out exactly what challenges they face and tailor our support to help them as best we can. Scotland has a track record of successfully planning and delivering events at international, national and local level and we will continue to work with the sector as we emerge from lockdown to ensure we remain the perfect stage. Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Fair Work and Culture

The events industry has been devastated by the coronavirus pandemic as one of the first industries to stop and it will be one of the last to restart. There is a desperate need for support and this £6 million Scottish Government fund will help a number of businesses in the short term until we can start to run events again.

This fund is designed to give much needed cashflow support to those companies who have faced real hardship during lockdown. It is on a first come, first served approach, with only the first 600 applications being eligible, so we would urge those in the events supply chain to get their applications in as soon as possible. Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events

This fund is open to the self-employed (through limited company or as a sole trader), partnerships and incorporated businesses who can demonstrate that supply to events in Scotland represents their primary source of income and that they have earned a minimum of £10,000 from the supply to events in Scotland in 2019/20. Businesses must have a place of business in Scotland and be supplying to events physically taking place here with only one application per business being permitted.

Business types eligible for support

Events medical servicesEvents freelancersExhibition services (including trades people, electricians, joiners)
FloristsCateringHealth and safety provision for events
Audio visual and technologySecurityProfessional conference organisers (PCO)
Staging and temporary seatingEvent transportDestination management companies (DMC)
Equipment hireEvent merchandiseTour guide/operator for event groups
Temporary event utilitiesPhotographyTranslation services for event groups
Production services for eventsTicketingAccreditation solutions
Marketing and PRMarquee hireEvent organiser/producer/promoter
Design and printVenue dressingEvent and production crew
Activity providers  

The fund is not intended to support; year-round operations such as attractions and venues; the hospitality industry such as hotels, pubs, bars, cafes, restaurants and nightclubs; private, social or family events such as weddings, dinners, functions or parties; community sports groups, teams or clubs; professional sports teams; artists, performers and athletes.

Read further information on the fund and the guidance document (including criteria).

Work is ongoing with the events sector on eligibility for support from the remainder of the total £10 million funding package. Further details on this will be announced once this process is complete.


Originally published online by VisitScotland on 24th August 2020. Source