As part of Cheshire West and Chester’s Re-opening and Recovery Programme for rural areas and local communities, the council is working with Cheshire West Voluntary Arts Network and Creative Lives, to offer microgrants to kickstart creative activity happening in communities across the borough. 

Creative Lives (formerly Voluntary Arts) is a national charity dedicated to championing community and volunteer-led creative activity, and working to improve opportunities for everyone to be creative. Creative Lives will work with the local team to support applicants and distribute grants of £200 - £500 to eligible groups throughout the borough’s rural areas and districts of Chester, Ellesmere Port, Northwich, Neston, Vale Royal and Winsford (Check your eligibility on this map)

The microgrants are intended to help local groups start, or restart, creative activities in local communities. The funding encourages community building, engagement and wellbeing, by supporting a wide range of art-forms in communities across the borough.

We encourage proposals that will do at least one of the following: enable activity to restart, celebrate the local high street and bring communities together safely. The grant can be used to support creative experimentation, reaching out to new members and audiences as well as covering practical costs (from hire to insurance).

The Reopening and Recovery Programme is funded by Cheshire West and Chester Council. These microgrants will fund activity happening between October 2021 and January 2022.

All applicants will be offered ongoing support from Creative Lives, Cheshire West Voluntary Arts Network and Cheshire West Voluntary Action, to continue to develop their activities. Successful applicants will also have the opportunity to apply for a small number of larger development grants.

Funding will be distributed in November (for applications submitted by 5pm, Friday 15 October 2021) and December 2021 (for applications submitted by 9am, Monday 15 November 2021).


Download full guidance here

Apply online here

If you are successful you will be notified within 10 days of the deadline and asked to complete a grant agreement. All microgrant recipients will also be required to complete a short evaluation and monitoring form following the activity which they will receive on receipt of the microgrant. (example questions here

Questions and advice

Please contact claire [at] creative-lives.org with any enquiries.

Or drop-in to an 'open surgery' (1-2pm, Monday 2nd November and 3-4pm, Wednesday 15th December

Funded by:

With support from: