The Tramlines Trust – the charitable arm of Sheffield’s 40,000 cap. Tramlines Festival – has fundraised £57,600, with funding grants going to 27 organisations in Sheffield following the 2023 event. Over 50% of these grants went directly to Hillsborough-based initiatives of where the festival is staged, including £5,000 to Hillsborough Together to help fund the Hillsborough Town Centre Christmas Lights event. Since 2018, this now brings the total donations of Tramlines Festival to £213,000 with an incredible £3.7m boost to the local economy in 2023 alone (independent report by Sheffield City Council).
The Tramlines Trust was born out of a desire to uplift and give back to surrounding grassroots communities, local charities and cultural organisations. Via an annual application process, the Trust offers vital funding to a wide range of organisations that sit within four key areas: Local Community, Future Generations, People and Planet and South Yorkshire Art and Culture.
Tramlines Operations Director, Timm Cleasby, said, “To see the full range of projects supported by the Trust and how they’re benefitting and using the funding is just wonderful. Our city is full of many people with powerful ideas and projects that create positive changes to communities, young people, artists and musicians. It’s a privilege to support their activities.”
Beneficiaries of the 2023 Tramlines Trust include the Hillsborough Hornet’s Disability FC who’ll be allocating funds for a pitch expansion plus training for more volunteers and RivelinCo, an organisation based close to the festival site in the famous Rivelin Valley that curates exciting events in unexpected places such as parks, schools, and empty shops, as well creative workshops to teach new skills.
Mental health charity Adira will use its funding to buy Christmas gifts for disadvantaged children across Sheffield, whilst Hillsborough-based, Bright Iris CIC, will support vulnerable employees in the workplace.
Further afield, Peaks of Colour, will continue to provide monthly hikes and ‘walkshops’ for people of colour in Sheffield and the Peak District in light of receiving a grant. Odd Child Productions – created by local artist and Tramlines regular Danae Wellington – will use its funds to deliver poetry and performance-based workshops in partnership with Mercia Learning Trust.
The Leadmill’s Studio Orchestra is also being funded by Tramlines. Rose Wilcox, Head of Programming said, “The Studio Orchestra is a project that brings young people together who would never normally meet, to collaborate and develop original pieces of music that cross genres of classical with commercial sounds of rap, drill, spoken word, garage, indie music and more. Involving organisations such as Sheffield Music Hub’s ‘Senior Orchestra’, Slambarz, Sheffield Music School and Sheffield Children in Care Council, the project ensures that young musicians get to experience working alongside music industry professionals.”
Since 2018 Tramlines has also donated 650 tickets to a variety of charities including, Tickets for Good providing event tickets to NHS staff, charity workers and those affected by the Cost of Living crisis.
Tickets have also been distributed to Sheffield Young Carers, allowing the young people they support attendance to the festival. Sarah Gerrard, Fundraising Manager at the charity said “60% of the young people we support in Sheffield come from 20% of the most deprived areas and we know that this kind of treat would be out of reach for many of the families. Tramlines has become something that the Sheffield Young Carers are able to look forward to within their time of support with us…Tramlines provides a place for our carers to be free of their caring responsibilities and enjoy the “normal” things that many of their peers do.”
The Tramlines Trust raised money across the year via ticket donations and at the festival with a charity collaboration beer brewed by Brewdog named ‘AYE PA’, guest list donations, bar donations, charity merch, Lidl’s ‘Bubbles & Bangers’, Nulty’s backstage bar (named in honour of Festival Director, Sarah Nulty) and a charity raffle hosted after the event.