The Rural Touring Mentoring Scheme is one of our longest-running and most successful development schemes, having mentored 32 companies, and supported many more to tour their work to a rural audience, since it was launched in 2005.

This highly successful scheme, enables members to pitch, gain feedback and access to a panel of rural venue programmers, promoters and producers. Mentored companies/artists are provided with an understanding of the issues and contexts in which rural touring operates; including advice on marketing, pricing, administration, contracting, press and publicity, licensing, designing
for small community spaces, technical considerations, artistic content and liaising with promoters. Artists are helped to make the most of the opportunity through additional support prior and following the pitching by PANDA with the help of peers experienced in rural touring. Those selected for the ‘pitching’ day watch each others pitches enabling them to learn about each others work
and different approaches in communicating that. The atmosphere is always highly supportive and often friendships and collaborations are born!

Delivered in partnership with the Northern Consortium of Rural Touring Networks it also enables programmers and promoters to be introduced to more local talent and to develop a relationship over time, building trust and understanding between artist and promoter. The PANDA scheme also creates a space for programmers and promoters to share knowledge, experience and tips face-to-face in a relaxed environment. To date, the scheme involves: Spot On Lancashire; Arts Out West Cumbria; Highlights Cumbria; Rural Arts North Yorkshire; Cheshire Rural Touring; Arts Alive
Shropshire, ARTery East Riding of Yorkshire and Live Lincs.