Building on what people told us

This is not a strategy that’s been developed in an ivory tower. Instead, it has been developed by drawing on what people living and working here told us. Their views are reflected in the strategy’s themes, ambitions and actions.

Delivering it must also be a shared endeavour.

We’ve engaged with partner organisations and residents extensively through workshops, interviews, surveys and formal consultation sessions. This strategy seeks to align existing resources in the most efficient manner, alongside seeking new investment to further enrich our cultural landscape.

The themes of this strategy

The strategy has four strategic themes which derive from our research into the opportunities we have.

Destination Hammersmith & Fulham: a place for quality culture, retail, food, green space and riverside, with an internationalist outlook; a place to attract people to live, work, visit, study and invest.

Creative Hammersmith & Fulham: a place that taps its creative potential for cultural production and for innovation in all our sectors.  

Included in Hammersmith & Fulham: a place that tackles inequality head-on, respecting diversity and including all residents in the opportunities we create.

Together in Hammersmith & Fulham: a place which works together as one, sharing leadership and responsibility for our future.

These themes are supported by a cross-cutting approach to addressing the climate and ecological emergency.  

In taking forward the strategic themes and an ambition to ‘do more’, it will be crucial to ensure that this is undertaken in a way that addresses the climate and ecological emergency to achieve a carbon net zero arts, culture and heritage sector by 2030.

Moving the themes forward

Each of the four themes is underpinned by a set of ambitions, detailing what we’re aiming for. Each ambition is then supported by a series of supporting actions leading to the sustainable positive changes we want to achieve for Hammersmith & Fulham.

The overarching aim of this strategy is not merely to foster a thriving cultural life in Hammersmith & Fulham. It is to do so in a way that is resource-efficient, sustainable, and optimises the use of existing resources while effectively attracting new investment.

Our aspiration is a rich cultural environment for all our residents, built in harmony with our economic, ecological, and community realities.

To fulfil the ambitions set out under each of the themes, we have identified a series of 'foundation’ actions that are pre-requisite for enabling delivery. These are immediate priorities for the first year of the strategy’s life:

  • convene a delivery board – a Hammersmith & Fulham Cultural Compact - to own and manage the strategy and action plan on behalf of stakeholders and the public
  • establish a data framework to understand our baseline, agree targets and accurately monitor progress in delivering the strategy
  • develop a funding and investment plan to ensure the strategy and action plan are appropriately resourced
  • develop a plan to coordinate and streamline the promotion of Hammersmith & Fulham as a great destination, and communicate the cultural offer to residents, visitors and stakeholders.

Completion of the foundation actions will serve to inform and shape how the remaining ambitions set out in more detail under each of the themes below are delivered, and if there is merit in adapting that delivery.

In collaboration with partners, we've crafted plans designed to turn our ambitions into reality. In this document, we've summarised some of the essential actions, to give an outline of what’s to come.

The strategy is supported by a detailed action plan which sets out what needs to be done and who will do it. While many of the actions will be delivered by the council and partners working together, some are for the council or specific partners to deliver themselves.


To ensure accountability and to oversee delivery of the strategy, we plan to establish a delivery board: the Hammersmith & Fulham Cultural Compact.

Such a board would draw on learning from the 'Cultural Compact' model piloted in 20 localities in 2019 by the Arts Council and Department for Culture, Media and Sport as place-led partnerships designed to support the local cultural sector and enhance its contribution to development, with a special emphasis on cross-sector engagement beyond the cultural.

A Hammersmith & Fulham ‘Cultural Compact’ involving the council and its partners will be pivotal in bringing our Cultural Strategy to life and ensuring all partners contribute to its delivery through:

  • Strategy oversight: Steering the implementation of the Cultural Strategy, setting priorities, monitoring progress, and providing strategic oversight, including reporting to stakeholders and transparency
  • Diverse representation: Consist of key individuals from across Hammersmith & Fulham's vibrant cultural sectors – and also our wider anchor institutions
  • Resource optimisation: Co-ordinating the optimal use of existing resources, supporting alignment to deliver the strategy effectively, and identifying areas where additional investment is necessary
  • Promoting collaboration: Encouraging partnerships and co-operation and avoiding fragmentation to help the borough’s cultural offer be greater than the sum of its parts
  • Responding to our communities’ needs: Acting as a forum to help the cultural sector as a whole to nurture a cultural landscape that is vibrant, inclusive, and accessible, enriching the lives of all residents.

Evidence base and monitoring our progress

A data-driven approach is essential if we are to deliver this strategy well. Gathering and analysing comprehensive, place-based data and understanding our baseline will be at the heart of how this strategy is implemented.

As well as being clear on our starting point, so we can measure progress and achieve our ambitions, we will explore how best to collect, present and share data between partners to help a range of agencies to make informed decisions and make sure we deliver for the borough together.

Funding and investment

A funding and investment plan will be a key pillar in the successful realisation of our strategy.

Working with partners we will explore a wide range of funding opportunities from public and private sources that align with the vision and ambitions set out in this document.

Ensuring transparency and accountability, we and our partners will manage all allocated financial resources, conducting regular reviews of progress to make timely adjustments and capitalise on emerging prospects.

By adopting a dynamic and adaptable approach to funding, we will strive to maintain the financial sustainability and robustness of our initiatives.

Promoting our offer

Coordinated and joined-up promotion will be integral to conveying our strategy's objectives, gaining support and fostering community engagement.

Through strategic communication channels and community outreach, we will work with partners to promote our initiatives, programmes and goals to keep our residents informed and involved.

Leveraging existing networks and relationships with partners, we aim to amplify and align our promotional efforts and inspire participation through community events, workshops, and awareness campaigns.

Continuous feedback from stakeholders will be actively sought, allowing us to refine our approaches and ensure our messages resonate effectively, ultimately strengthening implementation and garnering widespread support for our shared vision.