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Tramlines brings multimillion-pound benefit to the city and directly funds over 40 local organisations

A huge crowd of people stand around a large festival tent, trees are in the background
Tramlines festival at Hillsborough Park in 2022 - image by C Faruolo

Tramlines in the Community - Independent report shows 2022 event brought over £3.8 million to local economy with over £30k distributed by the Tramlines Trust including £10k given direct to organisations that benefit Hillsborough

The Tramlines Trust, created in 2022, has given out 42 funding grants totalling over £30k with over £10k going directly to businesses benefitting Hillsborough. Tramlines has now raised over £150k for charity since 2018 and donated over 350 tickets in 2022 to Tickets for Good, Sheffield Young Carers and other local charities.

An independent report from Bluegrass Research and Sheffield City Council has shown at least £3.8million was generated for the local economy including a direct boost for the local cultural sector by funding over £500k to the Tramlines Fringe and free activities in the city centre since 2009.

Tramlines 2022 raised over £50k for charity which went to the Tramlines Trust, Hillsborough Primary School, the NSPCC and The Sarah Nulty Power of Music Foundation - named after the former Tramlines director and gives grants to people in Sheffield using the power of music to transform people's lives. This brings the total raised since 2018 to over £150k with a 54% rise in charity donations between 2021 and 2022. Tramlines has tripled the number of charities supported since 2018.

The inaugural round of funding from the Tramlines Trust has seen £30,183 distributed to a wide range of businesses who enhance, educate or support the lives of local communities in the city. The Trust also funds projects and organisations that engage with young people, support South Yorkshire’s Art & Culture and support societal issues such as the environment, homelessness and health.

Over £10k from the Tramlines Trust has gone directly to Hillsborough. This includes the Hillsborough Hornets Disability Football Club and The Burton St Foundation, a community organisation hosting over 2,500 people weekly including an adult social care provision. Other Hillsborough based groups include Age UK, Disability Sheffield, S6 Foodbank, A Mind Apart, The 393 Centre (Youth & Community Centre), Rivelin Co, Riva Project (disability charity) and more.

Local group perform at Tramlines in the community space

Martin Smith, Chair of the Economic Development & Skills Policy Committee, Sheffield City Council, said: "Tramlines Festival is arguably the most exciting weekend of Sheffield’s events calendar attracting huge talent to the city, bringing millions into our local economy and putting on a fantastic show for our residents and visitors.

'As Tramlines has grown over the years, organisers have always been keen and committed to giving back to Sheffield’s communities. Their funding into arts and culture, and towards our local charities makes a huge difference to many people and organisations, and we welcome their continued support to the place they call home - our Hillsborough community.

'We look forward to seeing how our charities and cultural organisations benefit from this year’s funding, and of course to the all anticipated line-up announcement for Tramlines 2023."

For the first time, Tramlines has commissioned a full economic report with Bluegrass Research which showed that the 2022 event generated in excess of £3.8 million for the local economy. This was calculated by looking at the number of attendees, local contracts, accommodation, expenditure outside the event, people travelling to the city, local talent performing and local suppliers.

As part of the commitment to keep the festival supportive of local music and diversity, programming of The Library Stage in 2022 was handed over to various Sheffield based organisations. Friday saw local venue/event space DINA put together an all female showcase with an emphasis on LGBT+ artists while on Sat, Pattern + Push (artist and comp and mentoring programme) created a huge line-up of regional rappers. vocalists, DJs and lyricists who are being supported to create positive lyrics that serve to inspire young people. On Sunday BBC Radio Sheffield were invited to use their BBC Introducing brand to bring a range of fantastic emerging local talent to Tramlines.

All this activity has not gone unnoticed and Tramlines are delighted to reveal that they have been shortlisted at The UK Festival Awards for ‘The Sarah Nulty Community Impact’ Award. The winner in this category will be announced during the award ceremony on Tues 6 December in Manchester.

The hotly anticipated lineup for Tramlines 2023 will be the next major announcement from the festival. Stay tuned to the official website and social pages for future updates.

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Timm Cleasby, Tramlines Operations Director - ‘When Sarah took over as festival director we, as a team, had many discussions about how Tramlines could keep giving back to the community and supporting Sheffield no matter how the event evolved. The Tramlines Trust builds on these early initiatives and now supports a huge amount of Sheffield charities, businesses, artists and projects. Sheffield is our home and carrying on the great work that the Tramlines founders started to support Sheffield is a big priority for us all.’

Charlie Barton, Marketing and Community Engagement Manager - ‘Over the years Tramlines has supported a variety of Charities and good causes, this year we've levelled up the local support on offer. In Spring, we launched the Tramlines Trust and have distributed funds raised at this year's festival to some fantastic Hillsborough, Sheffield and South Yorkshire charities. Through the Trust, Tramlines fundraising is now reaching smaller grassroots organisations, casting the net of support wider than ever before, we can't wait to continue this in years to come and build on our collaborations with some incredible local initiatives .’

Nicola Wileman, Headteacher, Hillsborough Primary School - ‘Working with Tramlines has been a real pleasure. It’s great to see the festival organisers’ commitment to collaborative working, their partnership with us is always a priority for the team. Being in such close proximity to the festival, the organisers ensure the safety and wellbeing of local residents and businesses is considered at all times and they are committed to promoting the area of Hillsborough to all who attend.’

David Hall, Partnerships Manager, Paces - ‘The experience our children and families have at Tramlines is absolutely incredible. The whole team goes above and beyond to make them feel like true VIPS, from artist liaisons to backstage access, they had it all. To then be able to experience such a diverse festival which catered to every one of their needs and interests and with zero barriers when it came to accessibility needs, it truly was a fantastic experience, one our children don’t often get the chance to have.’ 

Julie Voisey, The Sarah Nulty Power of Music Foundation - ‘Not only is Tramlines a high quality, inclusive, safe and family friendly festival,  it also supports local charities such as ours, through Tramlines in the Community, and goes above and beyond what is expected. Tramlines Festival is not only about fun, but also giving back to our community which is why, here in Sheffield, it is valued so highly and is an intrinsic part of the culture of our city.