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:

Matthew Swann(Interim chair) Chief Executive, City of London Sinfonia
Sebastian CaterHead of UK Theatre and Workforce Development, 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
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
Paula OrrellDirector, Contemporary Visual Arts Network
Frederick HopkinsHead of Business Development and Membership, One Dance UK
Sarah Mears and Liz McMillanProgramme Manager, Libraries Connected / Libraries and Culture Services Manager, Slough Borough Council 


Central co-ordination team:

Anna DeverHead of Campaign
Rukhsana JahangirCampaign Manager
Sophie EvansDigital Marketing Manager
Daniela GerstmannDigital Marketing Officer

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Get It Loud In Libraries – helping families enjoy live music with increased confidence

Fantastic for Families Award 2020 Case Studies

We’re pleased to bring you a series of Case Studies from this year’s Shortlisted Organisations for the Fantastic for Families Awards.

Loud in Libraries CIC is one of the shortlisted organisations for this year’s Best Family Event Award, for their live event with singer Liz Lawrence.

Man holding baby who is wearing large blue noise-cancelling headphones

Loud In Libraries CIC has long made it a priority to deliver the Get It Loud In Libraries live programme in a format that creates world class gigs in libraries that reach out to all. Our driving mission is to shape live events with high quality music artists where there are practically no barriers to access; intimate gigs where families are encouraged to enjoy live music together, sometimes for the very first time, in a multi-generational setting.

Loud In Libraries worked with partners including: library staff, sound production professionals, music leaders, digital leaders, and artists and artist management to deliver a successful sold out event with acclaimed singer songwriter Liz Lawrence that was showcased in an inclusive Sunday afternoon matinee format.

During the preceding week Loud In Libraries delivered a GILIL Academy ‘rock n roll school’, working with music education leaders to offer talented local young people new skills in guitar, songwriting, drumming and events management. Over the course of 4 days the cohort gained the skills to deploy on the day of the Liz Lawrence show, running front of house, artist liaison and capturing the event on digital media. Liz Lawrence met with the young people on the day of the show and shared her experience and expertise to further support their learning and career opportunities around art, culture and the creative industries.

The event attracted families who had both never enjoyed live music together due to either licensing restrictions or the standard evening timing of live events, or indeed had never visited the library together. The accessibility of the event motivated families to travel from outside of the area as there were teenagers within the family that were fans of Liz Lawrence.

Learning and understanding

We found that the formula of live music, with quality radio playlisted artists, showcased on Sunday afternoons in a matinee format offered maximum accessibility across various audience groups. Families of different shapes and sizes attended as well as teenagers, young people, people living with protected characteristics, anxiety and hidden disabilities and lone female music fans.

Loud In Libraries commissioned an independent learning and evaluation expert to collect data for analysis on the day of the show and the overwhelming verdict was that live events, delivered at an optimum time, on a day when families in certain geographic areas struggle to identify ‘things to do’ were a very welcome addition to the cultural calendar.

What will do differently next time?

  • Work with local cafes and restaurants to offer a shortlist of recommended places to eat for families who are making ‘a day of it’ around a Get It Loud In Libraries event, especially those who have travelled distances to attend the show
  • Offer even more sets of ear defenders for the hosts of babies and young children who enjoyed the show with music loving parents
  • Consider family package tickets for single parents and children to make events even more accessible and cost effective for new audiences

What’s next?

The Get It Loud In Libraries live Sunday matinee programme allows families can enjoy the best artists performing in the UK and still be home in time for tea, bath times, Countryfile on TV and homework for students. The success of the programme means we will concentrate our focus on developing a core programme around this USP. We hope to continue to support artists to develop new audiences in geographical areas less travelled by the live music industry. Equally importantly, it allows libraries to create new audiences and future visitors by showcasing innovative events that attract people who are first time library customers.

Fairly unique for a live music event, the lack of alcohol sales within the library venue means families enjoy the event with increased confidence. It ensures that the whole community can get together to enjoy the best new and emerging artists with no barriers to access or participation.

Since 2005, Get It Loud In Libraries has been programming high quality, live music events in libraries in towns and cities throughout the UK. We consistently demonstrate a unique talent for identifying new and emerging artists on the cusp of breaking through to the mainstream.

Our programme is delivered in geographic areas that are generally outside the major metropolitan centres, with low live music provision – especially for young people and families. Find out more.

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