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Art Scholarship Training Opportunities for Under 18s

For specialist arts institutions or registered charities to provide training opportunities across the fine and performing arts: music, drama, dance, film, fine art, etc. 

The Trust welcomes applications from all sectors of the fine and performing arts, including (but not exclusively) all types of music, drama, dance, film and fine art. 

The scheme looks to support excellence and need and will fund arts training for school-age children under 18 outside of regular school hours, e.g. for weekends or evenings or during holiday periods.

The Trust also supports the provision of bursaries for undergraduate and postgraduate students. These activities are now considered separately; and more information about this scheme can be found here. If applicable, institutions may apply to both schemes but each application will be considered separately.

Individual scholars or students may not apply directly to the Trust.


Awards will run for three years, starting from 1 September 2025.

Before beginning your application, please carefully read the information below. This can also be downloaded as a PDF Guidance for Applicants.


Eligible organisations will be specialist arts training institutions or registered charities that can evidence the delivery of outstanding quality teaching within their field.

Institutions may make only one application in each round of this scheme. 

The applying organisation will be responsible for the selection of scholarship recipients, administration of funds and reporting to the Trust.

Ineligible applicants

Non-specialist arts schools are not eligible to apply to this scheme.

Multi-faculty universities are not eligible to apply to this scheme.

Individual students may not apply directly to the Trust.

Ineligible applications

The Trust aims to support excellent students without the financial means to attend high-quality courses from specialist providers. This scheme is not designed to address access to the Arts for all. Funds are also not available for courses for over-18s or for degree-level courses, please see our Art Scholarship Bursaries for Undergraduates and Postgraduates for the latter.

What the Trust offers

Organisations can apply for support to cover the costs of activities for outstanding students in financial need.

An institution may request funds for more than one type of artistic activity or form of financial support, for example:

  • Local, regional and national arts training dedicated to skills building, improvement of technique, and specialist provision to provide a base for professional training in the arts through weekend, after-school or summer school programmes
  • Awards which support the search for new talent and excellence via structured outreach activities

The Trust expects funds to cover the full course of training for each scholar, but not to cover the entire cost of putting on a course or to fund all the students attending the course.

Each institution can apply for a maximum total award of £475,000. Please note that this is not a target amount and requests for support for lesser amounts will be considered equally with those that bid for the maximum. 

The Trust will also provide a 5% contribution to the cost of administering the scheme, selecting the students and reporting to the Trust.  

Eligible costs

Eligible costs for scholarships may include some, or all, of the following but should cover all costs to enable each scholar to participate in the course or activity: 

  • relevant tuition fees
  • maintenance costs
  • equipment costs
  • travel and audition costs

Specialist arts boarding schools (day or residential) may only apply for funds for:

  • outreach activities that support the search for new talent and excellence via structured activities 
  • the provision of weekend, evening or summer intensive courses to students that are not already attending the school on a regular basis

Applications to fund fees for boarding students are not eligible for this scheme. 

How to apply

If you have not already done so, please read all the information on this scheme page or download it as a PDF Guidance for Applicants.

The Principal Applicant should contact the Trust grants@leverhulme.ac.uk to enable access to the Leverhulme Grants Management System.

When completing the online application form, please refer to the Application Help Notes.

The recommended browsers to use for the application system are Internet Explorer or Google Chrome.

Principal Applicant

Applications should be made by a Principal Applicant who will take responsibility for the administration of the award and for providing annual progress reports to the Trust. 

Institutional Approval

Applications will also require Institutional Approval of the content of the application, including the finances requested by the organisation. This approver may not be the Principal Applicant.

Assessment of applications

An expert panel will be convened to assess requests for funding and will consider the case that each application made for the excellence of the institution and course/activity, for example:

  • distinctiveness and originality of the offering
  • quality of staff
  • attainment of specialist board distinction (where relevant) over the past ten years
  • track record of past students
  • destination of past students

The panel will pay equal attention to the process for identifying genuine need among potential participants.

The Trust may fund a bid in full or provide partial funding at its discretion.

Feedback on applications

Unfortunately, due to the large number of applications for this scheme, it is not possible to provide feedback to individual applicants regarding unsuccessful applications.

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