Achates Philanthropy Prize Bursaries is the first in a series of national initiatives to be launched and led by the Achates Philanthropy Prize Ambassadors.

Supported by the Trustees of the Achates Philanthropy Foundation and the Directors of Achates Philanthropy Ltd, the Ambassadors are a group of experienced arts professionals: Suzanne Alleyne, Rose Goddard, Nancy Hitzig, Zak Hulstrom, Sarah Maguire, Renu Mehto, Kane Moore, Clare O'Hara, Sally Pennington, Annemarie Shillito and Rossella Traverso.

The inaugural Bursaries offer five UK arts organisations a bespoke masterclass to support the development of their fundraising. 2019 Bursaries were awarded to…

Hackney Shed

Hackney Shed is an inclusive young people's performing arts company established in 2001, in partnership with Chickenshed Theatre, and is now an independently operating charity. We work with young people aged 7-25 years old.  As an inclusive company we believe that every participant has something unique to offer to the development of the shared artistic vision and development of the group. We strive to make all our activities accessible to everyone, including members with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities (SEND), and we pride ourselves on our 'no barriers' policy. Hackney Shed's mission is to provide a vibrant, creative and informal atmosphere for children and young people in the London Borough of Hackney to come together, share ideas and produce exciting theatre in an inclusive environment. We bring young people with and without SEND together in a creative way and, through this, we aim to increase tolerance and confidence as well as reduce isolation for young people in the area.

Vicki Hambley, Artistic & Strategic Director, Hackney Shed: “Hackney Shed is very grateful to receive this Bursary from Achates. As a very small charity, this kind of support is invaluable. We look forward to working with Achates to develop our future fundraising potential."

Northern Ireland Opera

Founded in 2010, Northern Ireland Opera is Northern Ireland’s award-winning national opera company, widely acclaimed as one of the most exciting operatic start-ups in UK and Irish history. With a philosophy of artistic excellence and risk-taking, underpinned by a bold and imaginative approach to programming and productions, Northern Ireland Opera is committed to the idea of opera as a uniquely enriching ‘total’ art form and one which should be open to everyone. Through a modern but accessible production style, an emphasis on local participation and young people, and inexpensive tickets, the company has broadened the audience for opera in a region where there has been historic under-provision and where the arts are uniquely placed to foster relations between communities. In only nine years, the company’s energy, ideas and high artistic standards have led to both national critical acclaim and an international profile.

Walter Sutcliffe, Artistic Director, Northern Ireland Opera: “We're delighted to have been awarded an Achates Philanthropy Prize Bursary. It is so rewarding that the creative partnership we have forged with the Belfast Harbour Commission, which is already helping deliver results for the people of Belfast in terms of artistic excellence, outreach and community resilience, is being recognised in this way. Northern Ireland Opera will undoubtedly benefit hugely from the support which this bursary provides in terms of fundraising training by an Achates Prize Ambassador.”

Square Chapel Arts Centre

Square Chapel Arts Centre is a highly successful multi-artform venue and community hub in Halifax, West Yorkshire. In 1989, poised to be demolished, the building was saved by a group of six passionate local people with a view to creating a thriving arts centre. Over the past 30 years the organisation has grown to become nationally significant, an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation, and one of the largest cultural providers in the Borough. More recently, Square Chapel underwent a huge transformation, with the successful completion of significant capital redevelopment completed in July 2017 – and is now celebrated as winner of the RIBA Yorkshire Design Award for 2018.  The works doubled the footprint of the previous building with a stunning glass and copper extension, perfectly complementing the original architecture and red brick construction of 1889.

Adam Roe, Head of Development, Square Chapel Arts Centre: “We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded a Bursary. This presents a real opportunity for us to take our fundraising to the next level. Having recently completed a significant capital redevelopment, it really couldn’t have come at a better time for us as an organisation. Our growth means we are now in a better place than ever to help ensure we can continue to champion the arts and deliver activities that transform lives, challenge social exclusion and provide access for all.”

Streatham Space Project

Streatham Space Project is a theatre, music and comedy venue, aiming to bring the best live performance to South London. Set up by a team of Streatham-based artists in June 2018, our aim is to use live events to reach the different corners of our neighbourhood and bring people together. We want to promote the work we love for the area we live in.

Streatham Space Project: “We're delighted to receive an Achates Bursary. We're hoping that it will take our fundraising to the next level and help us deliver more forward-facing creativity in south London."

Writing West Midlands

Writing West Midlands is the literature development agency for the West Midlands, supporting creative writers and creative writing. It offers support to writers establishing their writing careers. It supports young writers as they develop their interest in creative writing. It runs festivals and events, including the Birmingham Literature Festival and the annual National Writers’ Conference. It exists to champion the West Midlands region as a great place to be a writer.

Writing West Midlands: “We’re really looking forward to the opportunities this Bursary from the Achates Philanthropy Prize affords us, and we’re eager to learn more soon.”