Guidelines and Frequently Asked Questions

Before you apply please download and read the full Programme Guidelines including information about the criteria and process for applying. 

Frequently Asked Questions

You should find all the information you need about the programme in the Guidelines, but if you have further questions these may be answered below. If you’re still stuck, please contact us on 020 7239 9119 or creative@helpmusicians.org.uk

Eligibility

My company makes a profit. Can it still apply?

This programme is not-for-profit organisations. Unfortunately companies limited by shares are not eligible to apply. 

My organisation is not a music organisation. Can it still apply?

This programme is intended for organisations working in the music sector, and particularly those working for the development and empowerment of musicians. Therefore, the primary focus of your organisation should be music.

Programme criteria

What types of project do you fund?

As this is a new programme we don’t have case studies of funded projects yet. We are not prescriptive about what your project or activity should be, but it should be able to meet these two basic criteria:

1.     Your activity should offer timely and relevant opportunities for musicians to develop their talent, skills and artistic practice at any stage in their careers. It could be based on developing artistic collaborations cross-genre, learning and professional development projects or improving the employability of musicians, for example. It can be in any genre of music and in any region of the UK. It should recognise and encourage the promotion of diversity within the sector.

2.     The funded work should aid the growth and development of your organisation and therefore enable more services and opportunities for musicians to be delivered in the longer-term. It could be an initiative which helps move your organisation towards financial sustainability and resilience, or research, scoping and learning to encourage the broader sector to adopt new models or effect positive change, for example.

I am a member of a band or ensemble. Can we apply?

This programme is not intended for bands or ensembles. There may be other Help Musicians UK opportunities more appropriate for you, and you can find out full details here.  

My project/work involves amateur musicians. Can we still apply?

Help Musicians UK is the charity for professional musicians. Unfortunately we cannot direct our funding to projects which are not fort the benefit of professional musicians. Therefore you must work with musicians who are either emerging (we define this as musicians in the final stages of study or training whether formal or informal, or those on the cusp of a professional career) or musicians who are professionally working (we define this as musicians who are earning a living from music). The musicians benefiting must also be aged 18 or over.

When we refer to musicians this also includes those working in professions involved in the creation of music (such as record producers, music managers, musical directors, music educators, sound engineers and conductors).

Do you fund core costs/running costs?

We anticipate that most of the grants we award will be for specific projects or initiatives that are time limited and/or are part of a wider programme of work that an organisation delivers.  

You may apply for a proportion of your core costs/overheads with the project budget, but this should be proportionate and realistic. You can also include management costs up to 15% of the total project cost. 

Online application

Do I have to apply online? Is there a paper or Word version of the form?

All applications must be submitted through our online portal. We do not have paper application forms or word or PDF versions. If you have specific accessibility requirements please contact us and we will be able to assist you or provide an alternative method for you to apply. If you would like a copy of the questions for information purposes only, you can download a PDF here. This is for reference only and will not be accepted if submitted. 

Can I save my application and return to it to finish later?

Yes. When you save your work you will be provided with a unique link which will enable you to return to your application. You can then return as necessary and complete the application in stages if you wish. It will need to be completed in full and submitted by the published deadline in order to be considered.

I have a problem with the online form. What do I do?

You can contact us on 0207 239 9119 or creative@helpmusicians.org.uk and we will do our best to support you.

What if I narrowly miss the deadline? Will you still accept my application?

The application system will be deactivated at 1pm on the deadline date of Friday 18 November. It will not be possible to submit an application after this date. 

Is my data protected?

Yes. All data is encrypted by our line form provider and is protected. All data entered and submitted is subject to the Data Protection Act 1998.  

Process 

Can I call contact you for support, advice or feedback before submitting my application?

We need to be fair and consistent with every applicant and we are a small team. So while we can help you with any technical issues you may be having (e.g. online application problems) and can answer questions about the programme criteria, unfortunately we are unable to give you any specific advice on completing your application or on your project content, and we cannot review draft copies and provide you with feedback.

Who assesses my application?

Your application will be assessed by an experienced member of staff from Help Musicians UK. Your application will then be submitted, along with a recommendation, to HMUK’s Creative Advisory Board who will discuss the applications and ratify decisions. The Board is made up of leading music industry professionals and is chaired by a Trustee of HMUK. Final grant funding will be approved by HMUK’s Chief Executive.    

When will I get a decision?

We aim to notify you of a decision in writing within 6 weeks of the closing date.  

Can I get feedback if I am unsuccessful?

We will provide concise feedback in writing to applicants who are unsuccessful. However we will not enter into correspondence about the outcome of your application.

Can I appeal a decision?

Decisions on funding are final and cannot be appealed. If you are unhappy about the process that was followed or they we dealt with you, you can follow HMUK’s Complaints Procedure, details of which can be found here

Applications for the National Grants Programme are now closed.