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Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Arts Cuts In Osborne's Spending Review Unveiled

Osborne outlines cuts of up to 30% to the Arts

Latest News: George Osborne's statement this lunchtime was only a tip of the iceberg figure for the (DCMS) Department for Culture Media and Sport's budget. The details of cuts to the arts and museums are expected to emerge later, when the full report is released by Jeremy Hunt's office. We expect to uncover that although national museums will be  protected and remain independent from Government intervention, their budgeting will face real cuts of 15%. The prospect of admission charging for museums will not be allowed by Whitehall, if this 15% per cent cap is to be held. A hole in the institutional running costs remains and may lead to self imposed entry charging in the future. So where will the shortfall come from? The arts will be hit much harder in places behind the scenes. It is expected that areas such as administrative costs will need to be reduced by 41%. It is also expected that curatorial staff and expensive exhibitions will be off the menu for the foreseeable future. The entire annual arts budget for Museums is only about £450m per year, a 29% cut contributes little to stemming the tide of the National deficit, while these actions will cause untold harm to England's cultural landscape and to the economically important cultural industries. The government will be eager to emphasise that the arts and heritage will benefit by an extra £50m each per year because of the return of the lottery to its original good causes in 2012. Arts cuts on paper look more like 30% rather than the 15% mentioned in the speech and the announcement that museums will stay free is almost a loss leader to the actual real cuts involved. It was also announced that the New extensions to the Tate Modern and British Museums will go ahead as planned. The 29% cut to ACE  (Arts Council England) will be passed on to about 850 theaters and galleries. This withdrawal is going to create a gaping hole in funding leaving ACE on its own to be the executioner. The smaller regional centres will likely be the first to go, absorbing the biggest impact of the cuts, to be phased in over the next 4 years. it will be interesting to note how quickly the cuts take to come into effect.   More to follow….….Read Updates....

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