What is the Campaign about?

Welsh language information

The Family Arts Campaign is a national Sector Support Organisation funded by Arts Council England and the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation to raise family engagement with arts and culture.

Since our beginnings in 2012, we have focused on three main areas of work:

  • Increasing the amount and range of artistic work available to families
  • Increasing the quality of experience for families
  • Improving marketing to reach more families

We are here to support National Portfolio Organisations, museums, libraries, community groups, individuals, and anyone else looking to better connect families with arts and culture.

You can take part by signing up to the free Family Arts Standards and Age-Friendly Standards quality-marks, by attending training and events, or accessing our online resources library. You can also promote all of your family and age-friendly events for free as part of our Fantastic for Families  campaign.


Who is running the Campaign?

We are a cross-sector and cross-artform initiative steered by a consortium of ten organisations and trade bodies. Our lead partner organisation is The Albany.

Logos of consortium partners: AMA, CVAN, ITS, One Dance UK, Society of London Theatre, UK Theatre, The Albany, Kids in Museums, ABO, The Audience Agency


The campaign is overseen by a Project Board:

Helen FeatherstoneDeputy Director, Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Hannah GagenAdvocacy Manager, Society of London Theatre / UK Theatre
Charlotte JonesChief Executive, Independent Theatre Council
Cath HumeExecutive Director, Arts Marketing Association
Robert O’DowdChief Executive, Rose Theatre Kingston
Gavin BarlowChief Executive/Artistic Director, The Albany
Matthew Swann (Interim Chair)Chief Executive, City of London Sinfonia
Mark PembertonDirector, Association of British Orchestras
Anne TorreggianiExecutive Director, The Audience Agency
Karla Barnacle-Best CEO, Discover Children’s Story Centre
Alison Bowyer and Laura BedfordExecutive Director and Head of Programmes, Kids in Museums
Rose CopseyCommunications Manager, Contemporary Visual Arts Network
Frederick HopkinsHead of Business Development and Membership, One Dance UK


Central co-ordination is led by a small team:

Anna DeverHead of Campaign
Clair DonnellyProject Manager
Rukhsana JahangirFamily Arts Network Coordinator

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Watch: Celebrating Age webinar – what it means to be dementia-friendly

Ages and Stages, New Vic Theatre and Keele University. Cr. Rachel Cherry

Thanks for those you attended last month’s Celebrating Age webinar: what it means to be dementia-friendly.

If you weren’t able to attend (or, if you’d like to view the presentations again) you can now access the recording, which is available to download as a resource.

This webinar was hosted by:

  • Imogen Blood, national Celebrating Age Evaluator
  • Grace Meadows, Director, Music for Dementia
  • Nicky Taylor, Theatre and Dementia Research Associate, Leeds Playhouse

And managed by Family Arts Campaign in partnership with the AMA.


Access the recording

To access the recording you’ll need to download the Webex player for Windows or Mac.

You can then download the recording.



Here is a list of further resources and links from our speakers.

Age-Friendly Standards: The Age-Friendly Standards are a national self-assessed accreditation for cultural organisations and a recognised and trusted symbol for older audiences and family groups including older people. Find out more and sign up.

From Imogen:

DEEP (Dementia Engagement and Empowerment Project) Guides: a series of guides containing practical advice, co-produced with people living with dementia on how to involve people, practical considerations when organising events, meetings, language, etc:

References from slide on The Benefits of the Arts for People living with Dementia:

DePuis, SL., Kontos, P., Mitchell, G., Jonas-Simpson, C and Gray, J. (2016) ‘Re-claiming citizenship through the arts’, Dementia 2016 v.15 (3) 358-380.

McGovern, J. (2015) ‘Living Better with Dementia: Strengths- Based Social Work Practice and Dementia Care’, Social Work in Health Care, 54:5, 408-421.

O’Rourke, H. M. et al, (2015) ‘Factors that Affect Quality of Life from the Perspective of People with Dementia: A Metasynthesis’ in Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (JAGS), 63: 24-38, 2015, DOI: 10.1111/jgs.13178.

Links from Nicky:

Leeds Playhouse Theatre & Dementia

Leeds Playhouse Every Third Minute festival report

Leeds Playhouse guide to dementia friendly performances

Maggie May production:

Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch, 13 March – 28 March 2020

Leeds Playhouse, 31 March – 18 April 2020

Curve, Leicester, 28 April- 2 May 2020

Dementia Friendly Leeds business guide

Alzheimer’s Society dementia friendly arts venues guide

Treasury of Arts Activities for Older People including ideas and session plans

About Celebrating Age

Celebrating Age is a fund from Arts Council England and the Baring Foundation, supporting cultural spaces and other organisations to be open, positive and welcoming places for older people; and taking high quality arts and culture into places where older people will find it easier to engage. Read more about the currently funded projects.


Webinar Speakers

Imogen Blood began her career in social work, before moving into qualitative research, with a particular focus on older people. In 2009, she set up Imogen Blood & Associates – a social research consultancy, which is leading the national evaluation of the Celebrating Age programme for Arts Council England. She is particularly interested in inclusion, strengths-based practice, dementia and ageing. In relation to Dementia Friendly Communities, she led the EU Joint Action on Dementia evidence review, produced a What Works and Why? guide for Alzheimer’s Society and has just completed a two-year evaluation for Wigan MBC on the topic.

Grace Meadows is a musician, music therapist, and Programme Director for the Music for Dementia 2020 campaign, passionately advocating for music to be an integral part of dementia care. As a music therapist, she has worked in educational, health and social care settings, working with both children and adults with a range of needs, including mental health, profound and multiple learning disabilities, and autism. She regularly plays contrabassoon and bassoon with orchestras across London.

Nicky Taylor is Theatre and Dementia Research Associate at Leeds Playhouse. She initiated and directed Every Third Minute, a pioneering theatre festival curated by people living with dementia, and facilitated the co-authorship of three plays by people with dementia and professional writing partners. The festival’s creative co-production process forms the basis of her doctoral research at Leeds Beckett University’s Centre for Dementia Research. She created the world’s first Dementia Friendly Performance and has authored a best-practice guide to staging dementia friendly productions. She supports the theatre industry, nationally and internationally, to involve and value people with dementia as creative equals. Her work with older people spans 25 years in care, community and arts settings.


> Visit our resources library for further Age-Friendly resources

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