b-side support for Artists during the Covid-19 crisis


b-side would like to reassure artists and our partner organisations that we are here to talk about the impact Coronavirus is having on your work.  We are committed to continuing our support of the many artists we commission across our programme, and, where possible, to offer support to artists in our region.

As an Arts Council funded national portfolio organisation, we receive updates from Arts Council on funds open to freelance artists and organisations and with our partners across the county, we will be posting links to these and to other networks that may be able to help you. Along with our partner organisations in the sector we are working to secure the long-term future of the arts in our region.

If you are looking for a friendly face/voice to talk through your own situation and you think we may be able to help, feel free to contact: alan@b-side.org.uk, sally@b-side.org.uk or molly@b-side.org.uk and we can arrange a call.

We will continue to update this page as and when we have more information about useful funds and support.
If you’d like to keep in touch, please feel free to join our mailing list here, or follow us on our social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) where we will be posting additional links as they come up.

In the meantime, stay safe and well,

b-side team: Alan, Amanda, Molly, Sally, Sandy



General Arts Council England advice:

Guidance for freelancers:

Guidance for non-NPO organisations:

Guidance for NPO’s:

Guidance from Government and other sources


The Arts Development Company



Dorset Artists Emergency fund – hardship grants available from £100 – £500 application open now all info HERE

a-n The Artists Information Company is offering bursaries of £500 – £1,500 to help support those whose livelihoods have been impacted by Coronavirus Covid-19. Deadline for applications: 12 noon, Thursday 7 May 2020. More info HERE

Freelands Foundation Emergency Fund – For artists and freelancers in England and Northern Ireland in partnership with a-n The Artists Information Company. The £1.5m Freelands Foundation Emergency Fund is supported by the Freelands Foundation, as part of a landmark commitment of £3m towards emergency funds for artists and freelance creative practitioners across the UK affected by the Covid-19 crisis. Applications open May 07 2020. All details HERE

Self-employed? You can now use HMRC tool to check if you’re officially eligible to claim self-employed grant support – you’ll need your UTR and National Insurance numbers to be able to check. Claims will be open from 14 May 2020. All info HERE

Can’t apply to HMRC or Arts Council? Freelance creatives living and working in Dorset (this includes Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch) who are experiencing severe financial hardship due to COVID-19. This fund is for individuals who aren’t able to receive support from other resources and are ‘falling through the gaps’ and not eligible or meeting the criteria for other funds like this one. For full details click HERE


Bridport Prize is now open 4 different writing categories with cash prizes all info HERE


What Next? Dorset, Thursdays at 2pm on Zoom
WHAT NEXT? Dorset is currently holding weekly updates/catch-ups with the arts, creative & cultural sector in Dorset to come together to support one another, share advice and pool ideas for getting through this extraordinary period of crisis. The idea is to have a general catch up and speak about: How are we all being impacted? How are we working differently under these circumstances? How can we support each other? How can we work together to secure the future of our sector in Dorset? Join the Facebook group for updates and meeting invites https://www.facebook.com/groups/1539427952876607/  or sign up to the newsletter HERE.

Dorset Creatives – sign up to their enews HERE


Thinking of teaching online? CuratorSpace Courses is a course and workshop listing platform which we’ve built to let artists and arts professionals move their IRL courses online and list them for free during the pandemic. Curatorspace are hoping it will make it easier for people to make a living in these difficult times, as well as giving others a chance to learn something new while they are in lockdown or self-isolating. If you’re interested then you can take a look at CuratorSpace Courses at https://courses.curatorspace.com. If you are interested in signing up as a tutor,  go to  https://tutors.curatorspace.com and fill in a short form detailing your previous experience.