Arts Council England, generally referred to as the Arts Council, is a national agency which, in its own words, "champions, develops and invests in artistic and cultural experiences that enrich people's lives."

To pursue this mission, it supports a range of activities in England "across the arts, museums and libraries — from theater to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts and collections."

With a history now spanning more than 70 years, the Arts Council has its roots in the Committee for Encouragement of Music and the Arts set up in 1940 and chaired in those dark days of World War II by the celebrated economist John Maynard Keynes.