Rosy James Memorial Trust Award

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All Funding for Individuals

Rosemary (Rosy) James died in 2010, having bequeathed over £500,000 to establish an annual bursary in her name to help artists, designers and makers to pursue their careers by developing a new body of work.

‘The Rosy James Bursary’ will be administered by the Arts Council on behalf of the Rosy James Memorial Trust. The value of the annual award is up to £15,000.

This unique award is directed at makers steeped in practice using materials singly or in combination. Such materials might include fired clay or glass; fine or base metals; textiles using any kinds of applications; wood; plastics; paper or other materials not included in this list, where the emphasis is based upon the transformation of materials through the use of sustained practice towards a series of critical outcomes.

It aims to assist makers to investigate and develop a body of work which would otherwise be unaffordable.

The period of the award will culminate in an exhibition of work on public display in Northern Ireland.

Who can apply?

Artists, designers and makers steeped in practice using materials singly or in combination in all types of working practice who must

  • Have made a contribution to artistic activities in Northern Ireland for a minimum period of 1 year within the last 5 years;
  • Live in Northern Ireland; and
  • Be at least 18 years old and not in secondary education.
  • Employees of statutory bodies , undergraduates and postgraduates are eligible to apply but they must prove that the funds which they are applying for are costs which are not properly the concern of their employer and are not related to their work or academic study. They must submit evidence of this in the form of a letter on headed paper from their Head of Department. In the case of post-graduate students, the letter must clearly state the title of the student’s PhD thesis and include a declaration by the Head of Department. This declaration must state “The project for which funds are being sought does not form part of any academic work undertaken in relation to the above-titled PhD nor will it be assessed as part of any academic course”. Applicants undertaking a Masters or a PhD must also include a separate statement which provides information on how the project applied for differs from their Masters or PhD work. Please note: The Rosy James Trust may use its own judgement in determining this matter.

What can you apply for?

The main thrust is to be directed towards the body of work and may include

  • Project assistance
  • Art materials/equipment
  • Buying time to replace other earned income costs lost due to time spent on the intended project/creating new work *. Eg, if you were taking unpaid leave from work to spend time on the proposed project
  • Fees for training courses
  • Artistic fees of Mentors
  • Artistic or technical fees including those towards production or post-production costs associated with presentation or exhibition of work
  • Documentation costs
  • Childcare costs
  • Project-related travel costs, including mileage costs (@25.7p per mile), commuter and air travel
  • Residencies
  • Subsistence costs @£25 per day.
  • Accommodation costs
  • Technical equipment related to the project/proposal** (equipment requests cannot comprise more than 50% of the value of your request)
  • * If you are applying for loss of earnings, the Rosy James Memorial Trust acknowledges an average of up to £125 per day as a set contribution. It is unlikely we will award a higher rate per day.
  • ** Equipment requests cannot comprise more than 50% of the value of your request; a maximum contribution of £1,200 will be made towards laptops and pcs, and £500 towards tablet computers. If you are including costs for technical or creative equipment as part of your application, it’s important you tell us:
  • why the equipment is necessary for the project and appropriate for your needs
  • your plans for continued use of the asset after the end of the project
  • why buying equipment is more appropriate than hiring it, where applicable
  • your plans for maintenance, storage and insurance, and any additional ongoing costs after the project ends *If you do not include this information, we may decide not to fund the equipment element of your request.

How to apply?

Prior to submission of your application, you may seek advice on any aspect of the form from the Arts Council Visual Arts team. Suzanne Lyle is the Head of Visual Arts and a Rosy James Memorial Trust member. She can be contacted at

You must apply by email. We will not accept applications in hard copy. Send your completed application form and all the requested mandatory enclosures to

Completed forms must be returned by 4.00pm on the stated deadline day, Friday, 3 May 2024.

If you feel you have a disability which affects your ability to complete the application form, please contact the University of Atypical (UoA). The UoA will provide tailored advice and support to D/deaf, disabled and Neurodiverse applicants when submitting applications to ACNI Programmes.