VisitScotland publish guidance for Events Industry Support Fund 2

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VisitScotland has today (Thursday 11 February) published the guidance for the recently announced Events Industry Support Fund 2.

The £3.9 million fund, which is being administered by VisitScotland on behalf of the Scottish Government and has been developed with input from the Event Industry Advisory Group, is open to new applicants who were ineligible to apply to the first Events Industry Support Fund launched in August 2020.

Applications for the fund will open from midday on Thursday 18 February 2021 until 5pm on Friday 26 February 2021 with full guidance available at: https://www.visitscotland.org/events/funding/coronavirus-support-fund.

The fund will provide financial support to Scottish event businesses, particularly those in the industry’s supply chain, that are still facing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19.

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Subject to demand, eligible events businesses that meet the criteria will be eligible to receive an award of up to £10,000, plus an additional 15% of total earnings in 2019/2020, up to a maximum award of £20,000. 

The criteria for the fund has been broadened out to ensure it reaches those event businesses last year’s Events Industry Support Fund did not reach and who may not have been able to access any other funding up to this point. Eligible event businesses with a permanent place of business in Scotland can now include the exporting of their event expertise in their total earnings, while the minimum amount of total earnings from events in 2019/2020 has been lowered from 40% to 25%. Total earning’s from eligible events must still be in excess of £10,000.

The publishing of the guidance also comes as the Scottish Government announced an additional £8.5 million of support for events to be administered by EventScotland.

Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events, said: “The guidance and criteria for the Events Industry Support Fund 2 takes on board the lessons learned from the original fund as well as the feedback from the industry to ensure it reaches the event businesses last year’s fund did not reach as well as helping those eligible event businesses that have be unable to access any funding up to this point.

“Scotland’s events industry continues to be severely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, with many businesses having been unable to work since March 2020. The announcement by the Scottish Government of further funding for the industry will ensure meaningful financial support is in place until events can restart.”

Peter Duthie, Chief Executive of the SEC and Chair of the Event Industry Advisory Group, said: “Today’s announcement from Scottish Government for additional funding for Scotland’s events industry together with the publication of the guidance for the Events Industry Support Fund 2 is welcome news. Scotland’s events and festivals sector has been one of the hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic as it was one of the first industry’s to come to a halt and will be one of the last to fully resume.

“With events unable to take place due to the ongoing restrictions, providing financial support is critical to ensuring we do not lose the world-class expertise that make up our vibrant events and festivals industry. The Events Industry Advisory Group has developed a strong working relationship with the Scottish Government and EventScotland. Through ongoing dialogue we have been able to represent the needs of the sector, including inputting into the guidance and criteria for the Events Industry Support Fund 2.

Businesses who were successful in receiving a grant award through the Event Industry Support Fund launched in August 2020 will not be eligible for this Fund.

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