Screen Hardship Fund

This fund is to support freelance screen practitioners working in all parts of Scotland’s screen sector and commercial photographers who are experiencing immediate financial hardship.

The Screen Hardship Fund is now closed.

We welcome the announcement by the Culture Secretary of a further £3m for the Hardship Fund for Creative Freelancers, being delivered by both Creative Scotland and Screen Scotland. This is a much needed additional investment in support for creative freelancers given the extraordinary demand we experienced during the first round of the Fund. The £3m has been added to the remaining £2m ahead of the Fund re-opening for applications on 10 November.


Application Process

Download the Screen Hardship Fund Guidance (PDF, opens in a new window)

Download the Equalities Monitoring Form (Word, opens in a new window)

View the Privacy Notice


About the fund

This fund has been provided by Scottish Government to support freelance screen practitioners working in all parts of Scotland’s screen sector, as well as professional photographers, who are experiencing immediate financial hardship due to the loss of income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The fund is part of Scottish Government’s £5m commitment to support creative freelancers who are experiencing hardship due to lost income from work and/or practice in the creative sector due to COVID-19 that is being distributed by Creative Scotland and external partners.

This fund offers a one-off bursary to those who are most deeply impacted and disadvantaged by the cancellation of work due to the emergency situation. The overriding priorities for this programme are to retain a vital workforce within Scotland’s screen sector which is at risk as a result of COVID-19 and to offer support to those who have been unable to access direct support to date.

This includes practitioners who operate using a personal service company (PSC) or ‘loan-out’ type structure, sole traders and PAYE freelancers. In this instance we will be working in partnership with Bectu Vision who are supporting the Screen Scotland team as external assessors. Bectu Vision will be supporting us to check eligibility and process requests as we are expecting a high demand for this fund.

What is the budget for this fund?

The total budget for Screen Scotland’s fund is £700k. The balance of the £5m support package committed by Scottish Government is available for the remainder of the arts and creative sector. These funds will be delivered by Creative Scotland through a range of partners operating existing hardship funds. We anticipate that these funds will open in October.

How much can you apply for?

Applicants can apply for a Hardship bursary of up to £2,000. You may request more than £2,000 if your request includes access.

Fund timeline

We will aim to notify applicants within four weeks of the date of application. The fund will remain open until all funding has been expended.

Please let us know if you need any support with submitting a request, for example if you have any access needs, are unable to complete the online application form, or if English is not your first language.