The crafts are an important part of our social and economic life with the Crafts Council Market for Craft report launched last month showing craft sales worth £3 billion to the UK economy. However, it is a sector dominated by micro enterprises and sole practitioners.
The impact of COVID-19 has cut off access to workshops and studios, blocked supplies and sales, shut down fairs and galleries but most importantly left craft businesses without an income. Whilst we welcome the government’s measures, like other freelancers, many are unable to access this support. Going forward we will need business incentive schemes that reach out to these micro enterprises if we are to get the creative industries working again.
We are in support of the Creative Industries Federation who launched their Our World Without campaign that is calling on government for sector-specific funding for the creative industries.
As well as being part of valuable networks like Creative Industries Federation and the Creative Industries Council we have been in direct and regular contact with relevant government departments and Arts Council England from March onwards. This ensure they are properly briefed on the craft sector situation as lockdown is eased, buildings start to re-open and businesses try to map a path to recovery.
Crafts Council support
We are currently fundraising to help makers at this time.
We have a number of online business resources including how to livestream your craft – which has become a useful way for makers to connect with clients and followers through lockdown.
Connect to us on all our social channels, follow our craft opportunities Facebook page and sign up to our regular maker newsletter.
And due to the difficult financial climate, we are offering makers three months free subscription to the Crafts Council Directory. Joining this network gives you access to the Crafts Council’s sizeable audience of buyers, collectors, craft enthusiasts and fellow makers. Use promo code DIRECTORY2020-01.
Resources and support
National Lottery Project Grants open on 22 July to meet the needs of smaller independent organisations and individual practitioners during Covid-19.
Government financial support for businesses during Covid-19
Government tax helpline to help businesses affected by Covid-19
Government Business Rates Relief
Government How to Calculate Self-Employed Profits
Government Claim a Grant Through Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)
Arts Council England Emergency Response Package for organisations and individuals
MoneySavingExpert (aka Martin Lewis) Coronavirus Help for the Self-employed
MoneySavingExpert Facebook film on advice for directors of small limited companies.
The Creative Industries Federation represents, champions and supports the UK’s creative industries and they are currently offering six months free subscription.
The Digital Culture Network can help develop your digital skills. They have lots of great resources open to all.
Facebook Business Resource Hub
Facebook Small Business Grants Programme
Working Class Artists Group pulled together all the benevolent impact funds for creatives run by unions and organisations.
The Culture, Health & Well-Being Alliance
The Business Finance Guide is a free and independent source of information on the forms of finance available to business owners produced by ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales) and the British Business Bank – it has produced new content designed to help companies to meet financial challenges resulting from the crisis.