Support scheme extended

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Juggling many hats

East Sussex businesses in the creative, cultural and digital sectors will be able to access further help after a support scheme has been extended. The South East Creatives programme – set up by the South East Creative Economy Network to help the creative and digital sector across East Sussex, Kent and Essex – will now be available until June 2021.

The programme’s top-up grant scheme, which offers non-repayable grants of up to 35% towards growth projects costing up to £4,000, is receiving further investment, part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

The grants can be used in many ways from buying new business equipment (from kilns to computers, and everything in between) to website development and specialist support, giving creative businesses the best chance to grow and diversify at a time of great uncertainty for the sector.

Hastings based “18 Hours Events” received a grant of almost £2,000 towards the cost of a Peugeot Partner van, enabling them to streamline delivery trips saving on costs and lowering their carbon footprint.

Scanning space photography

Grant funding also helped Alastair Fairley, director of the Fairley Archive of Space Exploration in Hastings, purchase new equipment to scan and restore the amazing archive of original NASA space photography and artefacts he inherited from his father, Peter Fairley, who covered all the moon shots for ITN.

Councillor Rupert Simmons, East Sussex County Council’s (ESCC) lead member for economy, said: “I am delighted that South East Creatives has secured more funding so this vital business resource can continue into next year. To date the scheme has awarded over £180,000 in grants to 133 creative and digital businesses in East Sussex, and given nearly 700 hours of business support.

“The creative sector has been particularly hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic and through this scheme we hope to support the recovery of our local creative and digital industries and get them back on track. I urge local businesses to get in touch with the team to see how the programme could help them through these difficult times.”

South East Creatives also funds workshops and events, which are still taking place virtually during the pandemic, a digital and data expertise programme, and an intern support programme which matches the needs of businesses while providing an opportunity for a student or graduate.

To find out more about the support on offer or to apply for grant funding visit https://www.southeastcreatives.co.uk/.

Source: ESCC

Image Credits: ESCC .

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