GFA applicant? Guidelines for paying artists - from Arts Council Eng

Arts Council England is committed to ensuring proper and fair payment to artists and those who work in the creative industries is in recognition of their professional status, skills and experience. They require that artists’ fees for activities funded by them should be in line with recognised codes of practice set by the relevant lead bodies (some contact numbers are given at the end).

While they recognise that there is a great value in people having access to work experience where it is offered and arranged properly and is a mutually beneficial arrangement, this should not be used as a means of attempting to circumvent the Minimum Wage Regulations.

ACE require organisations receiving funding, to ensure that salaries, fees and subsistence arrangements are as good as or better than those agreed by any relevant tradeunions and employers’ associations.

Applicants to ACE Grants for the Arts should make sure they can provide proper and fair payments to artists they will be working with when considering their budget. Applications for grants for touring should ensure that, in addition to adequate fees, subsistence payments are in line with the relevant trade union agreements.

Daily rates. Nationally recognised minimum rates are set by the entertainment unions and the appropriate employers’ bodies.

Entertainment union members can access information about rates from their union. Where entertainment union rates exist, we expect at least the minimum rate to be applied. There are at present no national professional organisations for some sectors (including visual artists). Following a ruling by the Office of Fair Trading on competition law, we are notable to offer guidelines on rates of pay for artists.

The National Minimum Wage Act (1998) and the National Minimum Wage Regulations (2001) place obligations on employers to pay their workers at least the national minimum wage.  For more details visit the HM Revenue and Customs site at

or the Department for Business Innovation and Skills website at

they also run a Pay and Work Rights Helpline:
Telephone: 0800 917 2368
Textphone: 0800 121 40424

Useful Contacts

The Artists Information Company – for visual artists.
The Toffee Factory
S19 Lower Steenbergs Yard
Ouseburn Newcastle upon Tyne
NE1 2DF   


have a section of their website called the ‘Knowledge bank’ which contains useful information for visual arts practice including guideline rates which can be found at the following link:

There’s also The artist's fees toolkit in the fees section of the knowledge bank.  
BECTU (for technical staff)    
373–377 Clapham Road
London SW9 9BT4    
Phone: 020 7346 0900  
Fax: 020 7346 0901   

Equity – for actors, singers and dancers.
Guild House
Upper St Martins Lane
London WC2H 9EG   

Phone: 020 7379 6000
Fax: 020 7379 7001

Equity also provide a full list of standard industry rates which can be found on their website:

Independent Theatre Council – for theatre practitioners.
12 The Leathermarket Weston Street 
London SE1 3ER  

Phone: 020 7403 1727  
Fax: 020 7403 1745  

Musicians’ Union – see website for contact details.  
For general industry enquiries:
Phone: 020 7582 5566  

The Musicians Union provide rates of pay for paying members only. For further information visit 'Join the Musicians' Union' page on their website.