What is the Campaign about?

Welsh language information

The Family Arts Campaign is a large scale, national collaborative programme led by the visual and performing arts sectors to increase levels of arts engagement by families. The Campaign focuses on three main areas of work:

  • Increasing the amount and range of high-quality content available
  • Increasing the quality of experience
  • Improving marketing


Who is the Campaign for?

This Campaign is primarily aimed at increasing and broadening audiences and participants for the visual and performing arts sectors generally, though our work is focused on those organisations who are members of our partner organisations, as well as ACE’s National Portfolio Organisations (NPOs).

Other organisations not part of one of the identified groups above, including museums, libraries, and educational establishements, are also welcome and encouraged to access all aspects of the Campaign.

Who is running the Campaign?

The Family Arts Campaign is an initiative of ten organisations & trade bodies:

Association of British Orchestras Independent Theatre Council Society of London Theatre UK THEATRE_CORE_rgb_100





Between 2012 – 2015 the consortium was awarded an initial grant of National Lottery funds by Arts Council England to develop a campaign focusing on the development of family arts engagement. The Campaign is currently funded by ACE until March 2017.


The Family Arts Campaign in Wales is being run for the Arts Council of Wales by Fieldwork in partnership with the UK Family Arts Campaign team, until April 2017. fieldworking.co.uk


The campaign is overseen by a Project Board:

Cassie Chadderton Head of UK Theatre & Membership Development, UK Theatre
Charlotte Jones Chief Executive, Independent Theatre Council
Cath Hume Executive Director, Arts Marketing Association
Robert O’Dowd Chief Executive, Rose Theatre Kingston
Julian Bird Chief Executive, Society of London Theatre
Matthew Swann Chief Executive, City of London Sinfonia
Mark Pemberton Director, Association of British Orchestras
Katy Spicer Chief Executive & Artistic Director, efdss
Anne Torreggiani Executive Director, The Audience Agency
Karla Barnacle-Best CEO, Discover Children’s Story Centre
Lisa Mead Artistic Director, Apples and Snakes
Gordon Dalton National Coordinator, Contemporary Visual Arts Network
Gavin Barlow Chief Executive/Artistic Director, The Albany

Central co-ordination is led by a small team:

Jenny Daly Head of Campaign
Clair Donnelly  Project Manager


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Families Matter
Family Arts Campaign Manager Jenny Daly shares key learnings and best practice that the
Campaign has learned over the past four years, in the journal of arts marketing – the quarterly publication of the AMA, a membership organisation that provides professional development and training opportunities for people working in the arts, culture and heritage sector.

Families go free: Engaging families in need in the arts
A ‘pay it forward’ pilot campaign aimed to help families most in need attend dance theatre performances, but it wasn’t all plain sailing. Rhona Matheson tells the story.

Allowed to play up
Is ‘live art’ the perfect medium for intergenerational arts projects? Liz O’Neill explains how children can help adults embrace the fun of experimental performance.

Z-arts on Babies as our future audience
Z-arts discuss their experience of welcoming families with babies, and how the arts can help babies develop emotionally and cerebrally.

To the theatre born: why babies need the arts
Anna Newell, Artistic Director of Northern Ireland’s Replay Theatre Company, tells us why babies need the arts in this Guardian theatre blog.

Tony Graham on theatre for young people & families
Artistic Director of The Unicorn and TAG shares his experience of the Theatre in Education programme and creating work for young people and families.

Making everything easy
Libby Penn, Managing Director of Spektrix on how a flexible ticketing system has boosted sales for a family show.

Parents in the arts need to stage a childcare revolution
Theatres are getting infinitely more family-friendly for audiences – but what about those looking to sustain a career in the industry?

Real modern families on stage
Z-arts artistic director Liz O’Neill on Family Matters, a research project by Z-arts into what constitutes ‘family’ in modern society.

Family matters: we can’t afford to lose a generation of theatregoers
Z-arts artistic director Liz O’Neill on the importance of keeping up with changing face of the modern family.

Come on in: top tips for welcoming family arts audiences
Family Arts Campaign manager Mari O’Neill gives her top tips for welcoming family arts audiences.

Rethinking the Family Audience
Family Arts Campaign director David Brownlee discusses making your organisation more welcoming for a diverse family audience.

Who is Family Theatre For?
Theatre maker Harper Ray tackles common misconceptions on family theatre.


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