Funding available to support music, film and TV industries in Merseyside

METRO Mayor Steve Rotheram has announced a £400,000 package of funding to provide immediate support for the city region's vital music, film and TV industries.

The measure is part of wider package of support that will be announced this week.

Two key funds have been created to provide urgent support for creative businesses, many of which are at risk of falling through the net of the core central government funds that became available last week.

The Music Fund will provide up to £10,000 of grant or loan funding to support micro-businesses and Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the sector through this period and help futureproof them for the longer-term.

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The Film and TV Development Fund will provide investments of up to £25,000 per project to support the development of ambitious and distinctive content across all feature film and TV genres, and for all platforms.

The funds will provide much-needed immediate financial support to businesses during the current coronavirus crisis and aim to ensure that high quality content ideas are in place to boost the post-COVID-19 recovery of the wider city regional creative sector.

The announcement is the first part of a number of targeted initiatives to directly support the survival of SMEs, creative and tech firms and help them access central government funds that will be announced by the Metro Mayor this week.

Steve Rotheram said: "It is absolutely vital that we do everything we can to protect and preserve our Music, Film and TV industries.

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"They are at the beating heart of our city region's very identity and are responsible for 5,000 jobs, contributing £228million to our economy every year in normal times.

"We have not received extra money direct from government to support them, but my team at the Combined Authority has worked incredibly hard with our partners to identify funds that were ear-marked for projects later in the year and brought them forward to make them available right now, when they are so urgently needed by the sector.

"Our aim is to support our businesses in this key sector to weather this storm, and to develop some of the brilliant ideas that we will need to shine a spotlight on the city region and get this vital sector back to full health, as we recover from the coronavirus crisis.”

Michael Eakin, chair of the LCR Music Board who will oversee the Music Fund, said: "This is a very welcome injection of investment into a sector which, like so many others, is really struggling.

"Small amounts of investment will ensure the survival of some of the crucial businesses and individuals who help make up the amazing ecology of our music sector, and will put us in a good place to bounce back strongly once this challenging moment is over".

Lynn Saunders, Head of the Liverpool Film Office, which will oversee the Film and TV Development Fund alongside its existing Production Fund, said: "Film and TV projects delivered over £17m of investment into the Liverpool City Region last year.

"With filming now shut down across the UK, it’s vital that we provide targeted, fast-tracked development support to the producers, writers and other creative talent whose ideas and scripts will be the bedrock for the recovery of our regional production sector later in the year."

Both funds are open for applications from today.

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