How to access the funding

The Creative Employment Programme in England has now closed for applications.

Costumes at the Royal Opera House
Costumes at the Royal Opera House

The Creative Employment Programme in England has now closed for applications. If you have any questions, please contact us.

The Creative Employment Programme has been funded by Arts Council England. As a result, Creative & Cultural Skills has become an Arts Council England delegated lottery distributor.

All funds we distribute through the programme must be awarded following an open and competitive application process.

​If you are made a formal offer of funding, you need to sign a funding agreement with us. This will include a payment schedule and any conditions associated with a payment.

Once all conditions have been met we will make a BACS payment directly into your bank account using the details you have provided.

Wage funding

The programme can cover some of the wage costs for new apprenticeship and paid internship job opportunities. There will also be some funding available to employers who offer work experience as part of our traineeship programme.

  • Up to £2500 per paid internship based on a minimum of 26 weeks of employment at 30 hours per week. Wages must be paid at National Minimum Wage or above.
  • Up to £1500 per Apprenticeship based on a minimum of 12 months at 30 hours per week. This is if the employer chooses to pay National Minimum Wage for Apprenticeships (£2.68 an hour).
  • Up to £2000 per Apprenticeship based on a minimum of 12 months at 30 hours per week. This is if the employer chooses to pay National Minimum Wage or above for the age of the apprentice.

Our grants make a contribution to the total costs of employing a young person. This does not include the costs of recruitment e.g. job adverts (however you can advertise your jobs for free through Job Centre Plus and the Apprenticeship Matching Service.

Match funding

The Creative Employment Programme can only fund a proportion of the full wage cost of an apprentice or intern and the employer will need to make up the rest. However, depending on the age and unemployment status of the candidate you recruit to your Creative Employment Programme position, you may be entitled to claim additional wage contributions from the government.

Employers are currently able to claim the following grants:

Apprenticeship Grant for Employers

Apprenticeship AGE Grant from the National Apprenticeships Service (£1,500)

If an organisation employs fewer than 50 staff and has not taken on an apprentice in the last year it is able to claim a grant of £1,500 from the National Apprenticeships Service. Up to five grants can be made to one employer.

Additional match funding

You are also free to secure their own match funding through organisations such as Local Authorities or Trusts and Foundations; we would ask that any match funding sourced by the applicant is clearly identified within the application form.

Please note that organisations will need to ensure their funding is eligible as match and not considered as double funding. Other arts lottery funding, such as Grants for the Arts cannot be used to match Creative Employment Programme funding.

If you would like further information from Jobcentre Plus on any of the above please email your details include name, business name, address and contact details to and a member of staff will be in touch with you shortly.

Making more than one funding application

Employers must not submit more than one application for funding to the Creative Employment Programme at the same time

However employers may be involved in more than one consortium bid. Where this is the case, it must be declared in both applications so that we can keep track of the allocation of opportunities per organisation.

You are free to make subsequent applications, once you have been notified of the outcome of any previously submitted applications.

As the Creative Employment Programme intends to support new job opportunities across England, please note that repeated applications from the same geographical locations cannot all be successful.

Schedule for applications

We have been open for applications since March 2013. The funding applications run in frequent rounds that each last five weeks. 

Applications closed in November 2015. Some Creative Employment Programme job opportunities will continue for some months after the final funding round closed. If you have any questions, please contact us.