Selected to join CF:SLR (Creative Freelancers: Shaping London’s Recovery)

cartoon of a probably female stick person with short hair and a smile working on a keyboard

Self portrait of me after chemo (c) Carole Edrich 2012


I’m thrilled to say that I’ve been selected as one of 50 creative freelancers in a cohort working with the Mayor of London on post-pandemic recovery. I’ll learn more when it starts, but from what I can gather, Creative Freelancers: Shaping London’s Recovery is a 10 month project where we will  feed recommendations to the Mayor. It seems this will be in 3 areas:

  • Improving job conditions, creation and retention for creative freelancers,
  • Advocating for an improved statutory position for creative freelancers,
  • Establishing skills and training opportunities for creative freelancers.

I’m not sure how this will be done. However it is clearly the second part of a long term program of which the Freelance Task Force was the first. Judging by the total funding announced by the Mayor’s Office, I’d guess this is one of three or four phases.

Fuel Theatre are the Project Manager/Facilitators

Here’s the project description

And the announcement from the Mayors’ Office

Here are some extracts from my application:

Creative freelancers and intellectual property (IP)

Creative freelancers are the font of innovation. They work within local geographic communities and communities of interest, are first to hear of – and share through their work – on-the-ground problems. They exemplify their communities and reach demographics resistant to conventional media. It isn’t so much that they(we) should have a role in London’s recovery, as it is that London will not be the same if it leaves them(us) behind. By finding ways to explicitly include creatives and their(our) products – including their(our) intellectual property -in the communities we are regrowing, we are building in tools to improve community cohesion, stimulate difficult conversations and increase physical and mental health.

My London perspective

Pre-Covid London was a world leader in dance and the arts, with people from the world visiting as a result. This wasn’t just so that they could experience the big stuff but for their own personal artistic growth. If we rebuild carefully we can maintain or even increase our world position. London is a world- leader in dance and the arts and I would like to help make sure that it remains so.

And on people and organisations that need inclusion

There are hundreds of tiny organisations (like Creative Bloc in Leytonstone of which I am a member) that I think might often not be explicitly considered. There are more organisations that are part of the What Next? East London alliance of which I am Chair and even more that are not part of these networks and work alone.

Some personal context

I’ve felt first-hand what it is like to fall between the gaps of coronavirus compensation and would like to try to prevent this happening as we recover. I have seen – and been subject to – a kind of cultural gaslighting that I would like to help prevent in the future.


Julia-Carolin wrote this post about one dancers’ experience of lockdown

I wrote a lot more, and submitted a video. But seeing myself in videos often makes me cringe so I won’t subject you to that.

I’ll post more when – and if – there is something to say.