Metroland Cultures Fund

 16 April 2020 — 31 December 2020

(c) Raden Anandra (c) Raden Anandra

Supporting Brent artists during COVID-19

The ongoing isolation forced on us all has been particularly tough on individual artists and creatives who have simultaneously lost their audiences, access to spaces and, in many cases, their incomes. New charity Metroland Cultures – set up to deliver Brent's year as London Borough of Culture and, crucially, its legacy beyond 2020 has established a Fund offering tangible financial support to the borough’s cultural and creative sector during the pandemic.

The Metroland Cultures Fund is here to help artists to stay creative through these challenging times, offering funding for you to reflect, plan or develop your practice – in whatever area you feel you need most assistance. The Fund offers up to £1,000 for artists and creatives to cover initiatives and expenses including:

  • Putting existing work online or creating new digital work to be shared
  • Delivering online sessions to support the local creative and cultural sector via the Brent Artist Network
  • Purchasing of arts-related equipment
  • Research and development to test out creative ideas or explore demand
  • Paying for your time or a consultant’s time to support you with any of the following: business planning, marketing, fundraising, sponsorship, PR or other related professional development costs
  • Digital inclusion - making your online work accessible

The deadline for applying was 18 May 2020 and successful applicants will be notified by 1 June 2020.


The Metroland Cultures Fund is here to support artists and creatives* resident in Brent who have lost income and work as a result of Covid-19, and meet the following criteria:

  • Resident in Brent, aged 18 or over
  • Reliant on income from your creative practice to get by
  • In need of financial support from this Fund in the short-term to get back on track
  • Self-employed, freelance or currently unemployed
  • Be able to prove that the pandemic has led to loss of work (e.g. event cancellations, loss of commissions, loss of other income related to your creative practice)

* Artists and creatives refer to anyone who makes their living from creating art - this includes visual artists, writers, musicians, dancers and performers, producers, choreographers, editors, theatre and film-makers, composers, directors, designers and curators.


  • Students in Further or Higher Education
  • Those who do not have at least a two-year track record of professional creative practice
  • Those not in need of financial relief, including those with significant savings (over £5,000), expected payments or other funds they can rely on to get by


Please email team@metrolandcultures.com with any questions about the Metroland Cultures Fund and we will get back to you asap.

The Metroland Cultures Fund will be the first initiative by Metroland Cultures - the charity set up by Brent 2020, London Borough of Culture to help deliver its cultural programme for the year and ensure its legacy for local people beyond 2020.

John Newbigin, Chair of Metroland Cultures, said: "The Metroland Cultures Fund will be a huge boost for Brent’s many artists and help them keep the borough full of energy and life during the COVID-19 lockdown. Taking the imaginative step of launching Metroland Cultures today as an independent charity, helps ensure that the Brent 2020 programme, and its legacy for 2021 and beyond, can respond to the uncertainties of the months ahead and reflect what the people of the borough want."


Information about Brent Council’s emergency support for those affected by COVID-19 is here.

A list of other resources to support artists and creatives during this period:

Please do follow the Brent Artist Network on Instragram (@brentartistnetwork) or join the Facebook group, where we’ll be posting useful information and opportunities for artists as well as broadcasting artist talks and hosting workshops and webinars.


● Application deadline: Monday 18 May, 23:59
● Successful applicants informed: W/c Monday 1 June


A panel of artists and Brent 2020 team members will assess applications according to the following criteria:

  • How far the applicant meets the eligibility criteria listed above
  • Clear vision for how the grant will used and how this will support the applicant at this time
  • Clear articulation of how the grant will help sustain or develop the applicant’s practice