ACE new Vision and Goals – Let’s make them better.

Convener(s): dee

Participants: About 5 then second wave of 4

Summary of discussion, conclusions and/or recommendations:

Question came out of deep misgivings about the above but no rationale to support that feeling.

Vision and goals were read out.

Comments included;

ACE re-structuring again (3rd time in last 12 years?) - they want new business models for the “industry” when they can’t even work one out for themselves.   

What the hell is a “relationship manager” supposed to be?

Document is woolly and oily.  Goals are not really goals.

What’s wrong with the 1967 charter where Arts Council exists to

“develop and improve knowledge understanding and practice of the arts”

“increase accessibility of the arts to the public throughout Great Britain”

“advise and co-operate with Government Dept’s, Local Authorities on any matters concerned , whether directly or indirectly, with the forgoing objectives.

ADVOCACY IS A VITAL ROLE FOR ACE (consensus around this one) who should aim with all of us to raise the arts in the prioritiy list for Government and Local Authorities.  That should be a goal.  Our audiences are clearer about value of the arts than ACE.

It looks like a document that is preparing for cuts.

In Ireland NGO funding has been cut and they await outcomes for arts funding.

Eastern European companies see taking state funding as colluding with the state – artists there work all the time and live frugally.

There has to be an Arts Council and it appears to have to spend money and time justifying and defending decisions – mostly to artists.

Most successful theatre culture’s support long term development of ensembles.

A suggestion was discussed:  Big RFO’s (National/RSC plus???) should have ten years funding then none – they have brand and connections enough to float on their own. No organization should have more than 50% of costs funded.

Someone thought ACE corrupt.

ACE has no organizational memory – mistakes repeated and good models not shared.


No particular consensus – the issues are so complicated and the ACE culture so entrenched probably best to fight with devotion to getting on with making theatre.