CASHLESS payments for street performers, an increasing emphasis on fairness for performers and venue workers, a drive to be as inclusive as possible: the Fringe, with its new Blueprint, is looking to the future.

Even though chief executive Shona McCarthy dislikes talking about numbers and size - a media obsession, perhaps - there is no avoiding the sheer scale of the annual festival she oversees: this year more than 3500 shows in total, 317 venues, 56,000 performances and companies travelling from 51 countries.

And expansion, and in the Fringe's case, gravity-defying constant expansion, comes problems. The Fringe's new Blueprint, a neat A5 publication,

takes a look at, and aims to tackle, a lot of these.

It does acknowledge that it, a relatively small arts charity with a staff of 20 or so, cannot sort them all itself. The problem of accommodation for visiting artists could be solved by aid from the capital's universities, Ms McCarthy noted, for example. Keeping the costs down for performers will also need aid from powers beyond that of the Fringe, even though it has decided to freeze registration fees until 2022 (at least), and has decided to reduce the commission it takes on box office transactions to 3% from 4%.

There are issues beyond the Fringe's control. One is Brexit, and next year's Fringe will be the first after that calamitous disruption. Given that even the powers-that-be cannot say exactly what it will mean, or lead to, it is hard to know what it will mean for Festival, but Ms McCarthy is determined to maintain the permit-free status of performers.

The other is money. Ms McCarthy yesterday once again stated her frustration at losing regular funding from Creative Scotland in January. Unlike another arts organisation in the news this week, NVA, the Fringe is unlikely to shut down. But although some make a lot of money in August (very many, of course, do not), the Fringe Society does not reap huge profits. So building or finding a new home for the Fringe Society, as stated in the Blueprint, might be a tall order.

It will be interesting to see, in 2022, how much of its aspirations became reality.