CREATIVE Scotland gave their strongest hint yet that they may climbdown over decisions to strip funding from some of the country’s most celebrated arts organisations.

Last week, around 20 companies discovered they were going to lose out on a share of £99 million of regular funding to be dished out by the body over the next three years.

Companies like Birds of Paradise, Lung Ha and Janice Parker Projects, who work with disabled people, all lost out.

As too did dance company Plan B, the Ayr Gaiety Theatre and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society.

The Emmy award nominated classical musical group, the Dunedin Consort, warned the cut could cause them to reassess their future.

But it was the decision to slash the money going to groups like Catherine Wheels and Visible Fictions, who work with children, in what is supposed to be Scotland’s “year of young people”, that caused the most difficulties for the quango.

More than 150 people working in Scottish theatre, including John Byrne, and actors Ron Donachie and Julie Wilson Nimmo signed an open letter calling for Catherine Wheels to have funding reinstated.

Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop intervened over the weekend, suggesting the quango had perhaps not handled the situation as well as they could have done.

A lot of “angst and worry” could have been avoided if Creative Scotland had been “clearer to children and disability theatre companies”, the minister tweeted.

Creative Scotland announced on Tuesday that they would have an emergency board meeting to “take stock” of the fallout from the funding announcements.

Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland yesterday, Janet Archer, the chief executive of Creative Scotland, said the board would meet and “consider all of the applications that haven’t been funded that were fundable”.

While the quango boss said arts companies were “operating in an environment where public finances are more pressured year on year,” she also accepted that “world class touring theatre for young people, performance for young people” made by Scottish companies needed to be supported.

Archer added: “Across the network there is a lot of work with and for children and young people, so some of the newer organisations that are coming in are reaching out to young people who wouldn’t ordinarily have the opportunity to access the arts, but we completely accept, and I completely accept, and the companies involved know that because they’ve met with me directly, that world class touring theatre for young people, performance for young people, is a different proposition, and that’s why we’re convening to take stock and consider all of the communication.”

In their open letter, which has also been sent to Hyslop and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, the Scottish theatre workers said Catherine Wheels were “one of the most thrilling companies for us as theatre makers to work with.

“Catherine Wheels have spent 20 years honing the skills needed to support, nurture and inspire one of the most imaginative and thrilling audiences there is; young people.

“To consistently serve and challenge this audience and respond creatively to their emotional, social and imaginative needs; to take their lives and stories seriously and respond with work that is as sophisticated and complex as they are.

“It is this body of experience and work that make them one of the most thrilling companies for us as theatre makers to work with.”

Archer also hinted that it may be time for Creative Scotland to look at how regular funding is awarded, as it’s only available for organisations who have constitutions.

She told BBC Radio Scotland: “I think we have to think differently in relation to how we support artists and artist-led companies who may not neat fit neatly into that box.”