Submission Details

We’re a small team, so we are not after 100 ideas per production company. Quality rather than quantity please.

If you have ideas for the Children’s Lives strands we’re looking for a single concept. For Open Ideas we’re looking for a maximum of five ideas per company.

What you send us is not designed to be final submission to the ACF. The purpose of the application is for us to then to have a discussion about the idea and deciding what we’ll want to be submitted to the fund.

When writing your pitches we’re keen that there’s bullet points, that tackle the ACF criteria so we can see we’re all going in the right area.

ACF Indie-Related Criteria

Quality and Indie Background: Productions must be of broadcast standard, aspiring to meet the high-quality purposes and characteristics that are expected from public service content. How can you demonstrate your track record of producing high quality broadcast content Who are the experienced production staff and senior leadership that will ensure this quality?

At least one of the following:

Nations and Regions: Merit will be given to productions that are representative of the nations and regions, both on and off air, and which improve the provision of content which is reflective of the cultural identity of the UK’s nations and regions. How will the project represent the cultural identity of the Nations and Regions of the UK? Is the team based outside of London or in the Nations and Regions?

Diversity: Merit will be given to productions that promote diversity both on and off air, and projects which tackle under-representation, including gender, disability, age, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Funding will not be awarded to productions targeting young audiences that promote negative stereotypes. How will the project promote diversity on-air? How will you demonstrate the team’s experience tackling under-representation?

Innovation: Merit will be given to programmes that introduce new ideas and innovative approaches to public service output, and to programming in general, on the station concerned. How will the project demonstrate innovative approaches towards production, storytelling or other features of programming?

New voices: Merit will be given to initiatives that introduce fresh voices and enable smaller content producers to compete in the audio and broadcasting landscape. How will the project introduce new voices, perspectives and ideas to the public service landscape? Will the project be produced by staff who are relatively new to the industry, or from a smaller company (e.g. under five people)?

What we’re asking from you, now is:

  • Two sentence pitch of the idea
  • Up to 1500 characters (about 250 words) fleshing out the idea
  • Up to 1500 characters outlining why you meet the Quality and Indie Background criteria above. Please also mention if you’ve previously produced any kids content.
  • Up to 1500 characters outlining if the idea meets the Nations and Regions, Diversity, Innovation and New Voices criteria
  • An indicative total cost. Is this a £5k idea or a £50k idea?

With regards to money – each wave of the fund tends to have around £300k of grantable income. Usually there are 10 to 12 programmes/series funded, that would mean an average grant of just under £30k. We’re happy to apply with ambitious £100k series, but the opportunities could be limited and so harder to achieve. Some small ideas might be more commissionable, especially for a station like Fun Kids that does not have the audience reach of an Absolute Radio or a Magic. Keep this in mind when submitting ideas.

You can read about the money allocated to each ACF project here.

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If you have any question, or want to arrange a call to discuss them – email