Hearts for the Arts FAQs

Or you can read our FAQs in Welsh

What is Hearts for The Arts?
Hearts for the Arts is an awards initiative which recognises and celebrates exceptional local government support for the arts. Some local authorities and cultural trusts really understand the importance of the arts to the wellbeing of local communities and the value this small but crucial investment brings, even in financially challenging times. Hearts for the Arts says thank you to the councils, councillors and council officers supporting the arts.

When did Hearts for the Arts start?
Hearts for the Arts began in October 2016. It is now in its fourth year.

Changes for 2020
This year, changes have been made to include the activities of cultural trusts working on behalf of local authorities. The National Campaign for the Arts is keen to recognise those who have used trust status to enhance arts provision and benefit local people.

A new award has been added, ‘Best Arts Project – Arts, Health and Wellbeing’, recognising projects that have had a positive impact on mental and physical health and wellbeing of individuals and communities.

And the Best Arts Champion category has been opened up to allow nominations for any local authority or cultural trust worker; nominations are encouraged from all areas.

Who is involved?
Hearts for the Arts is an initiative run by the National Campaign for the Arts, delivered by UK Theatre. The 2020 Hearts For The Arts Awards will be delivered in partnership with Culture Counts, the Local Government Association, TheatreNI, Thrive, Voluntary Arts Wales and Wales Council for Voluntary Action

How is it funded?
The costs associated with the awards are covered by the National Campaign for the Arts, which is a registered charity funded by donations from the public and arts industry organisations. Support in kind is provided by UK Theatre and other partner organisations.

What are the award categories?
There are five award categories:
Best Arts Initiative
Best Arts Project – Community Cohesion
Best Arts Project – Arts, Health and Wellbeing
Best Arts Champion – Local Authority or Cultural Trust Worker
Best Arts Champion – Councillor

What geographical areas are covered?
The awards cover initiatives, projects, councillors and officers working in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

What are the key dates for this year’s awards?
Nominations open on Thursday 10 October 2019 and close at midnight on Friday 8 November 2019.

The shortlist will be announced on Tuesday 14 January 2020, and the final winners will be announced on Friday 14 February 2020 – Valentine’s Day – so we can show our winners some love!

Nominations

Who can be nominated?
For Best Arts Initiative, Best Arts Project – Community Cohesion and Best Arts Project – Arts, Health and Wellbeing: an initiative or project created or delivered by a county, district, borough, city council or cultural trust. The initiative or project must have taken place within the last 12 months.

For Best Arts Champion – Local Authority or Cultural Trust Worker / Councillor: an individual whose work influences and encourages arts activities within their council area. The work you are nominating them for must have been undertaken as a direct part of their employment with a county, district, borough, city council or cultural trust (including cultural trusts delivering on behalf of their local authority). The individual must have worked for the county, district, borough, city council or cultural trust within the last 12 months. A Mayor is eligible for nomination in the Best Local Authority Arts Champion – Councillor category.

Who can nominate? / Is there anyone that can’t nominate?
Anyone can make a nomination.

For example, you could be a member of the public who has seen or been part of a great local authority project; an employee of a local authority running an initiative; or a colleague of someone you think deserves an award.

How do I nominate?
You can nominate a project or person by filling out a nomination form at: http://forthearts.org.uk/campaigns/hearts-for-the-arts/
Nominations are open from 10 October 2019 to 8 November 2019.

Can I make more than one nomination?
There is no limit to the number of nominations you can make. Please make sure you submit a separate nomination form for each one.

Judging the Awards

What is the judging process?
Officers from the National Campaign for the Arts will create a longlist of nominees. Our judges will consider the merits of each longlisted nominee and will score each entry based upon the criteria set out in the nomination form, determining the shortlist and winner for each category.

Who are the judges?
The judges are Samuel West, actor and Chair of the National Campaign for the Arts, and a panel of esteemed figures in the arts (to be announced).

Previous judges have included Samira Ahmed, Maria Balshaw, Deborah Bull CBE, Les Dennis, Jude Kelly, AL Kennedy, Kwame Kwei-Armah, David Lan, Lorna Lee, Josie Long, Chi-chi Nwanoku OBE, Phillip Pullman, Bob & Roberta Smith and Roy Williams OBE.

The Winners

How will the winners be recognised?
The awards will be presented by Samuel West, actor and Chair of the National Campaign for the Arts, at the Local Government Association’s Culture, Tourism and Sport Conference. Winners will be offered a complimentary place at the conference, which is the largest annual gathering of councilors and officers involved with culture, tourism and sport.

Who are previous winners?
You can read all about last year’s winners here: https://forthearts.org.uk/hearts-for-the-arts-awards-2019-winners-announced/

Further Support

How can I or my organisation help?
You can really help us by getting the message about the awards out there. We want lots of nominations from all UK nations, and following the shortlist and winners’ announcements, we want to make a big song and dance about the fantastic work they do. Make sure you follow us on Twitter @weareforthearts and on the hashtag #HeartsfortheArts, and on Facebook facebook.com/weareforthearts to share their good news.

You can also support the awards and the campaigning work of National Campaign for the Arts by joining our supporters’ scheme at forthearts.org.uk/support-us or get in touch with us on hello@forthearts.org.uk if you want to help in any other way.

Contact Information

Who should I contact for more information about Hearts for the Arts?
If you have any questions or need further information about the Hearts for the Arts awards, please email ukt@soltukt.co.uk.

Who should I contact for more information about the National Campaign for the Arts?
For further information about the work of the National Campaign for the Arts, please email hello@forthearts.org.uk.

Where can I find Hearts for the Arts on social media?
We are on Twitter at @weareforthearts and #HeartsfortheArts.
You can follow Hearts for the Arts on Facebook at facebook.com/weareforthearts

How can I stay updated?
Join our mailing list for occasional updates on the Hearts for the Arts Awards and National Campaign for the Arts campaigns.