About us

We are Creative & Cultural Skills and the National Skills Academy for Creative & Cultural.

Our charitable mission

  • To give young people opportunities to work and learn in the creative industries
  • To ensure that employers benefit from a skilled generation of talent
  • To help the creative industries continue on a course of economic growth.

We are a campaigning organisation championing youth employment and fair access.

The UK’s creative sector is the best in the world, but to ensure that status in the long-term we must ensure that the next generation can access creative careers – regardless of their background.

In 2013 we launched ‘Building a Creative Nation’ with the aim of creating 6,500 jobs for young people across the creative industries in 1,000 days.

We are encouraging the UK’s 107,000 creative businesses to go even further and create 50,000 opportunities to help stem the tide of youth unemployment.

Our approach

We work closely with our network of supporters – the National Skills Academy for Creative & Cultural – to deliver our aims.

The Skills Academy made up of individuals, creative businesses, and education and training providers, and is open to all those who demonstrate a commitment to fair employment.

With support from our Skills Academy network we deliver programmes designed to improve the provision of skills and training in the creative and cultural industries.

Find out about becoming a supporter…

Our programmes

Creative Choices

Creative Choices is a resource for anyone that wants to work in a creative career.

Jobs: our jobs listings are populated by employers across the UK. All the jobs, apprenticeships and internships we feature meet the requirements for the National Minimum Wage.

Training: our opportunities listings include events, workshops and courses to help you build the skills you need.

We also work with leading employers across the UK to deliver training opportunities:

  • Our Creative Choices events give 13-16 year olds the chance to learn about working in music, theatre, design and cultural heritage.
  • Our Production Days give aspiring backstage crew the chance to work at some of the country’s biggest music festivals.
  • Our Technical Masterclasses provide bespoke training for young professionals with some of the leading practitioners within theatre and live events.

Advice: We believe that employers should have a direct influence on the training of the future workforce, so that young people are equipped with the skills they need when searching for jobs.

Creative Choices is an online hub of advice and opportunities for anyone that wants to work in a creative career.

It has helped over 2 million people by delivering insight and knowledge from those that work in industry to those who aspire to do so.

Network: Through our online resources and events, we are connecting industry professionals with the future creative workforce.

Creative Apprenticeships

We want creative businesses to recruit people with the right skills so that the sector can continue to grow.

We support businesses of all sizes to create employment opportunities, and we provide wage-subsidy funding through the Creative Employment Programme and similar initiatives.  

We’ve put over 3,500 young people in apprenticeships across the UK since 2008, and through our Building a Creative Nation campaign we aim to create a further 6,500 opportunities by 2015.

In doing so, we’re spearheading a shift in recruitment culture, away from reliance upon unpaid workers and towards a more responsible and more sustainable model.

We believe that fair access and fair pay are essential to ensuring a diverse and economically strong creative sector. If you agree, we want to work with you.

Find funding to take on an apprentice or sign up to our Fair Access Principle.

The Backstage Centre

We built a word-class technical training and rehearsal facility in Purfleet, Essex – The Backstage Centre. This was in response to an identified need for over 6,500 new jobs in the live music and theatre industries by 2017.

The Backstage Centre is used by the international music, film and theatre industry as a rehearsal, performance and filming venue. At the same time, we give students and young professionals the opportunity to work and train ‘on the job’ alongside the commercial hirers.

The Backstage Centre is a trading subsidiary of Creative & Cultural Skills, meaning that any profits we make through commercial activity directly funds our charitable work to help young people. In this way, the professionals that use the building are helping us to provide resources for the future creative workforce.  

Situated at High House Production Park, The Backstage Centre is at the heart of a cultural industries business zone just inside London’s M25 and is part of a major regeneration project in the Thames Gateway.

Find out more about The Backstage Centre.

Research and industry standards

We conduct research to improve understanding of the skills needs of creative and cultural industries.

By measuring the labour market and tracking growth, we can make the case for change in the education and skills system where it’s needed.

All of our programmes and campaigns have been developed in response to our own in-depth research and analysis. 

Our research also informs our work to set National Occupational Standards, which are used to develop vocational qualifications such as apprenticeship frameworks.

Our research has been widely cited in Government policy and commissioned reports, and it is freely available at the Creative Blueprint website, where we also house a library of other reports about the creative industries dating back to 1997.

Find out about our Building a Creative Nation research.

Our role and responsibilities

We are licensed as a Sector Skills Council by the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills. Sector Skills Council licences are governed by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills.

We work across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. We are members of the Alliance of Sector Skills Councils, collectively representing the skills needs of UK industry.

Our licence means that we are recognised as the Standard Setting Body for the creative and cultural industries, working with employers and industry representatives to set National Occupational Standards to inform the development of vocational qualifications.

We are an Issuing Authority for Apprenticeships in England, as designated by the Minister for FE, Skills and Lifelong Learning, responsible for quality assuring apprenticeship frameworks to guarantee that they are genuinely employer-led.

We are a member of the National Skills Academy network, recognised by the Skills Funding Agency as providing genuinely industry-led skills initiatives.

Our Skills Academy is a National Portfolio Organisation of Arts Council England.

We are a member of the Confederation of Apprenticeship Training Agencies, as part of our role in running a recognised Apprenticeship Training Association.

Company information

Creative and Cultural Industries Limited is a company limited by guarantee and registered in England and Wales. 

  • Registered offices: The Backstage Centre, High House Production Park, Vellacott Close, Purfleet, Essex, RM19 1RJ
  • Company no. 05122855
  • VAT no. 987725455
  • Creative and Cultural Industries Ltd is registered in England as Charity no. 1105974
  • Creative and Cultural Industries Ltd is registered in Scotland as Charity no. SC042165
  • Creative and Cultural Industries Ltd is registered with the Information Commissioners Office, registration no. Z9353021
  • Contact email info@ccskills.org.uk.

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