Events businesses who have previously received COVID-19 support through the Events Industry Support Fund (EISF) will be automatically contacted from this week regarding top-up financial support.
VisitScotland has announced further details of the additional £7million of funding announced by the Scottish Government last December to help the sector deal with the ongoing impact of COVID-19.
The funding will be delivered in two parts.
Top-up payments will be made to existing recipients of EISF awards while a second fund, Events Industry Support Fund 2, will be set to receive new applications.
The changes acknowledge the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions and their impact on the events industry, with many event businesses having not worked since March 2020.
It also acknowledges the need to broaden out the eligibility criteria of the original Events Industry Support Fund to capture many of those event businesses it did not reach the first-time round and who may not have been able to access any funding up to this point.
Businesses which have not previously been awarded financial support from the scheme will be able to submit applications from the week commencing 15 February with further guidance on how to apply available from the week commencing 8 February.
Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop (pictured) said:
“The first hardship fund provided welcome relief for the events sector but the continued restrictions mean that businesses continue to face financial difficulties.
“We have listened to those in the sector and have made changes to the fund to ensure that support reaches those who need it as quickly as possible.
“Events are part of Scotland’s cultural, social and sporting fabric.
“The Scottish Government has announced £23 million of additional funding for events in recognition of the devastating impact of the pandemic and I will continue to do everything within my power to support the sector.”
Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events, said:
“Scotland’s events industry continues to be severely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, with many businesses having been unable to work since March 2020.
“This latest funding has been designed to continue to provide the necessary financial support to a broad range of event businesses within the supply chain given the initial timescales for the restart of events has been significantly extended due to lockdown and the ongoing concerns around the new variant.”
The process for delivering the latest round of funding has been developed in consultation with the events sector, including the Event Industry Advisory Group, feedback from unsuccessful applicants to last year’s fund and the second online survey of the event industry supply chain conducted by VisitScotland’s Events Directorate in December 2020.
The latest funding is part of the £13 million of additional funding announced by the Scottish Government last December.
The revised Fund will also draw upon £1 million of as yet unallocated funding from the first Event Industry Support Fund, taking the total funding to be made available to events businesses through the revised Fund to £8 million.