About the programme

National Leisure & Culture Forum Leading Learning Programme Information for applicants for 2017/18

What it’s all about

The National Leisure and Culture Forum is an association of professional bodies representing managers across the fields of culture and leisure.

The NCF Leading Learning Programme was generously supported by the Cultural Leadership Programme as the first leadership programme to be specifically aimed at the cultural sector within local government.  It is now supported by professional associations in membership of the National Culture Forum to support the leadership development of all their members.

It has five main support elements:

The programme previously offered optional accreditation from City University. City are no longer running their Cultural Leadership MA so we are currently exploring alternative accreditation through the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) or Chartered Institute of Management (CIM).

This will be the ninth year of the programme. There is now a summative independent evaluation of the first five years and an Local Government Association supported brochure telling some of the previous participants’ personal development stories. For more details download the brochure. [pdf]


Who it is for

The programme is aimed at:

We would expect participants to have overall responsibility for or expertise in more than one area of cultural services, but because local authorities and cultural organisations have such varied structures we can be flexible.  People currently managing Cultural Services may not even have a Cultural Services background. What is most important is an ambition to succeed in the workplace and to extend the creative and innovative perspectives of culture, leisure and community services to influence the wider political agenda.

It is open to managers, officers and independent consultants from all four nations, England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.


How much it costs

The subsidised cost in 2016/17 of each place was £4,000 + VAT for local authorities, charitable trusts and individual consultants and £5,000  + VAT for commercial companies and national cultural bodies. We hope we will be able to maintain a similar price structure for 2017/18.

Opportunities for early booking discounts, bursaries and staggered invoicing will also be made available.


Selection procedure

All applications will be assessed by the Director of the programme and the Leading Learning steering group together with Martyn Allison, former LGA Culture and Sport Adviser.

We are looking for participants:


Next Steps

The programme will be begin in autumn 2017 and run through 2018. Application forms will be available from the Director of the Programme from April 2017.

If you would like to discuss any aspect of this information or get clarification on any point arising, please contact the Programme Director c/o Arts Development UK via email at ArtsdevUK@aol.com





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Leading Learning Year 7 report now available
The summative evaluation report of year seven of the LLP can now be downloaded as a pdf via the news page.

Resilience support now available
The NLCF Leading Learning Programme has developed a package of specialist in-house learning, development and improvement support. This support has been specifically created to help leaders, teams and partnerships within the culture, leisure and sport sector to develop enhanced workplace resilience.

Master Class Series: workplace resilience

A new Leading Learning Programme Master Class Series will focus on the subject of workplace resilience.  These four interactive one-day work shops will enable leaders to survive the unprecedented challenges that the sport, leisure and culture sector is currently facing; and even to thrive in this environment!

Rate your own workplace resilience
Try the free Workplace Resilience Diagnostic Exercise to help you assess your requirements for training and support. Download the tool now.