London Small Theatres Grants Scheme

The London Small Theatres Grants Scheme is a capital fund that awards up to £5,000 to small theatres in London which are undertaking building projects.

The scheme was set up following the London Assembly investigation led by Tom Copley AM into the challenges facing the capital’s small theatres and its July 2013 report Centre Stage: Supporting small theatres in the capital.

Priorities include projects that address urgent building repairs, improve operational viability, introduce environmental improvements and enhance physical accessibility. Technical equipment and refurbishment of soft furnishings are a low priority. The scheme can also be used to help lever in other sources of investment, particularly philanthropic support.

In response to the coronavirus crisis, the scheme will now be able to support theatres to cover the additional costs of reopening after several months’ closure, including making adaptations for increased hygiene and social distancing measures.

In reviewing applications Trustees take into account a project’s urgency, other resources available to the applicant and the extent to which the grant would make a significant difference to promoting the better protection of theatres. Funds are generally awarded where they are considered to have the most impact in realising an applicant’s capital project.

See how SPID Theatre has benefited from the London Theatres Small Grants Scheme.

With thanks

The Mackintosh Foundation and Fawn James at Soho Estates support our London Small Theatres Grants Scheme. 

Who can apply

Applicants must satisfy the following criteria:

  • Operate a theatre in London that is under 300-seats in Zones 1 and 2 and under 500-seats in outer London
  • Own or lease the building or be able to otherwise demonstrate at least 5 years of secured future theatre use.
  • Demonstrate that they run a regular theatre programme of professional, community and/or amateur work presenting no less than 30 performances a year
  • Demonstrate how the public benefit of the works will be protected or have a bona fide not-for-profit/charitable organisational structure.

How to apply

Round 8 of the London Small Theatres Grants Scheme is open. Please send your application to us by Monday 2 November 2020 at noon. The dates for the subsequent round will be announced in due course.

Contact for more information and to discuss your project before applying.

Round 7 of the London scheme closed to applications on 3 February 2020. Applicants will be notified of their outcome in March.

London Small Theatres Grants Scheme

Our support for the London Small Theatres Grants Scheme reflects our continuing commitment to London’s arts scene, and means that small theatres will be able to honour London’s theatrical heritage, and be confident of a bright future.

Fawn James, Director of Soho Estates