Announcing the Capital Investment Ready cohort

Glass fronted building at night with lights on inside

Today we announce the 12 cultural organisations taking part in the Capital Investment Ready strand of Transforming Energy, as part of the Arts Council England’s Environmental Programme. Taking the learnings from our landmark programme Spotlight, Capital Investment Ready will be working with two cohorts of organisations that are already making significant progress in energy reductions. It will support them to become Capital Investment Ready for the electrification of one key cultural venue, and aims to help them decarbonise their buildings by 2030. Read below to find out why these organisations are ready to take part in this new programme:

Modern building with floor to ceiling glass windows against a grey sky

Our ambition is to lead and showcase good practice within the arts by modelling our journey to net zero by 2030. We believe that the Capital Investment Ready Programme will provide us with the resources and support needed to achieve this goal.

We have a proven track record of success with limited resources, a clear vision for the future and a detailed plan for how we can electrify The Courtyard and make a large step towards our target of net zero. We are confident that we have the ability to make our ambition a reality with the help of the Capital Investment Ready Programme and we look forward to working with the JB team and our peers to achieve our goals.

Building with glass windows and red brick exterior against a blue sky

Farnham Maltings:
Farnham Maltings is delighted to join the Capital Investment Ready Programme to accelerate our commitment to environmental responsibility. We have ambitious plans to reach net zero by 2030, and through our networks to inspire other arts and cultural organisations to play their part too. Our much-loved listed building won’t be easy to decarbonise but we believe the Programme will equip us to plan and fund the capital projects to reduce our energy consumption. We look forward to sharing our successes and challenges of this journey with our peers and learning together as part of an industry committed to tackling the climate crisis.

Building with glass windows and red brick exterior against a blue sky

London Transport Museum:
London Transport Museum has an ambition to reach net zero by 2030, and has already commissioned professional feasibility work to inform the decarbonisation strategy for our main site, the former Victorian Flower Market in Covent Garden. Capital Investment Ready programme will help us to make the right decisions as we develop the scope of works, and ultimately produce a deliverable scheme that we can fundraise for. This work on the Museum estate is vital to underpin our Real Green Leadership strategic priority.

Building with glass windows and multi coloured exterior against a blue sky
Credit: Will Johnston Photography

Midlands Arts Centre, Birmingham:
Midlands Arts Centre is thrilled to be part of the Capital Investment Ready programme, which acknowledges our progress in energy reduction and will further build on our climate commitment. We are proud of our environmental achievements, which have resulted in a year-on-year reduction in energy consumption.

We recognise that there is more work to be done to become more energy efficient and reduce our emissions. The scale of the challenge is immense, but this ambitious scheme will help us to take practical steps towards decarbonisation. Working alongside other pioneering organisations that have been accepted onto the programme, we hope to be trailblazers for carbon reduction in arts venues and demonstrate what is possible with vision, dedication and optimism.

Building with glass windows and red brick exterior against a blue sky

Queen’s Theatre:
We are delighted to be embarking on the Capital Ready Investment Programme. Over the past five years, Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch has invested over £1.5m in ensuring our grade two listed building is environmentally responsible. We are ready for the next challenge as we seek the skills, expertise and invaluable knowledge from Julie’s Bicycle, Pilio and our peers to realise our ambition of becoming a Net Zero organisation by 2030.

Glass fronted building at night with lights on inside
Credit: Luke Hayes

Royal Opera House:
We are looking forward to working with Julie’s Bicycle and other large cultural organisations to progress towards decarbonising our buildings. This brilliant new programme will help us take practical steps to reduce our carbon emissions further and meet our vital net zero target.


Royal Shakespeare Company:
RSC Technical Director and Senior Leadership environmental representative, Tomas Wright

River in the foreground. A red brick building in the background against a blue skysaid: “The RSC recognises that we are facing a climate change emergency and that the ambition to decarbonise our theatre spaces is vital. We are aware that through our activities, we have an impact on the environment and contribute to climate change and are continually seeking new ways to work towards becoming a truly environmentally responsible theatre.

So, we are delighted to be part of Transforming Energy – Capital Investment Ready, an initiative by Julie’s Bicycle, which will help us plan how we will decarbonise the Royal Shakespeare Theatre and Swan theatre spaces by 2030. The programme will allow us to receive support and learn from other organisations as well as become advocates – providing example and leadership for others to take environmental action.”

Sage Gateshead:
We’re excited to be taking part in the Capital Investment Ready programme. Investing in our building to increase its energy efficiency is a vital step in our journey to being net-zero by 2030. The programme will help us renew, upgrade and future-proof our building for years to come.

Sadlers Wells:
At Sadler’s Wells, being part of the Capital Investment Ready programme is the next step in our journey towards net zero greenhouse gas emissions. We have been working on energy efficiencies for our buildings and have a targeted action plan that frames all aspects of our work, and this programme puts us firmly on the pathway to identify the future technologies we may need in order to decarbonise. Howard Clark – Director of Visitor Experience.

Close up of glass fronted building and colourful panels at nightUnicorn Theatre:

At the Unicorn, we’re proud of our achievements so far in limiting our impact on the environment, but recognise that the theatre building itself represents our biggest challenge in reducing our emissions. We’re really excited to be part of the ambitious Capital Investment Ready programme to continue to push at what’s possible to achieve for our organisation and the wider sector, and to upskill ourselves as we begin to plan and deliver our vital future capital project.

Long building with white windows against blue skyWatershed:
At Watershed, we believe radical action to address the climate emergency is essential to our work. We’re thrilled to be part of the Capital Investment Ready Programme, working with Julie’s Bicycle and other determined cultural organisations to address our biggest challenge: retrofitting our beautiful Grade II listed building. We are proud of our carbon measurement reduction work so far, and have ambitious, wild, and generous visions for our home. Building on our existing climate and inclusion work, we hope to be a best practice example of how to decarbonise heritage structures to future-proof and protect culture, community, and creativity in the face of climate crisis.

We also welcome FACT to the cohort.

If you are a National Portfolio Organisation, and would like to know when applications for the next cohort open, please sign up to our newsletter for the Arts Council England Environmental Programme. If you are an organisation keen to do more around energy reduction of your cultural buildings, you can also take part in our free Transforming Energy – Buildings Net Zero Energy programme. Here you can find a programme with self-service resources, opportunities to seek support from our technical partners, Pilio, and training on good energy management practice provided by Julie’s Bicycle.