Independent Film Trust

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The Independent Film Trust
Non-profit: Private Company Limited by Guarantee
Founded 2004
Headquarters London, England, UK
Website Official website

The Independent Film Trust is a UK-registered charity [1] which was set up to advance the cause of independent film-making. It works with groups such as the British Independent Film Awards and the Raindance Film Festival in fostering, promoting and celebrating independent film-making in the UK.

The IFT is run by the Board of Trustees, which has been chaired since 2006 by Neil McCartney. It was founded in 2004 by Elliot Grove.

Its patrons include Sir Alan Parker, Faye Dunaway, Terence Davies, Bill Forsyth, John Irvin, Mike Leigh, Samantha Morton, Tim Roth and Nick Broomfield.


The IFT supports ventures and initiatives that encourage an interest in film production and viewing and which help emerging film-makers to develop and express themselves, through financing activities such as basic film courses for the disadvantaged, screenings of quality films that did not reach the audience they deserved and the provision of training scholarships for those who have demonstrated talent but need monetary or other help.

However, the IFT does not directly fund the development or production of individual films themselves.

The charity's first film-making course was set up in 2010, when it ran an eight-week programme [2] for adults recovering from mental health issues, working jointly with the Raindance film-making organisation and Westminster Mind. In September one of the these films - Night Music, a 12-minute animation by Paul Jacques - was selected for inclusion in the Shorts programme of the Raindance Film Festival.[3]

In 2011 the IFT joined with Raindance and Staffordshire University to set up a masters programme which leads to an MA or MSc in Film by Negotiated Learning.[4] Raindance/IFT was the first outside body to be validated by the university to deliver such a course, having been approved in August 2012 as a franchise partner.[5]

The creation of an online version of the programme, which was launched in October 2012, makes it available to students based anywhere in the world with access to a broadband internet connection. In theory a student could progress all the way to a masters degree without ever attending a designated physical location or actually meeting any of their tutors. That is, provided that they had handed in work and projects that met the assignment guidelines and postgraduate requirements (and kept up-to-date on fees). The programme is highly flexible and allows the students to choose their own modules, and design and deliver them through self-directed learning with Raindance supplying support, tutorials and access to its wide and varied range of classes.[6]


  1. ^ UK Charities Commission: Register of Charities
  2. ^ The Guardian: Vision Shorts, 13.04.10
  3. ^ Raindance 2010 Lineup Announced, 07.09.10
  4. ^ [1] Raindance website
  5. ^ [2] Staffordshire University website
  6. ^ [3] Raindance website

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