Industry leaders have warned of “disastrous” consequences for the culture sector if Arts Council England is forced to axe up to £14 million of its 2010 government funding package.In The Guardian, Lyn Gardner has blogged on the same subject.
Cuts across unprotected government agencies, such as the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, are expected when Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair Darling announces his second budget on April 22.
In expectation that cuts could be passed on from DCMS, the arts council last week announced that it was preparing for three scenarios - a 1.5%, 2.5% or 3% drop in its third and final year of allocated funding for 2010/11, which equates to £7 million, £9.4 million or £14 million.
"The arts," declares [Culture Minister, Andy] Burnham," have to live in the real world." I would say that the arts always have lived in the real world — in fact, much more so than the bankers and politicians. Most arts organisations are already nimble, lean, fleet of foot and ingenious. With proper investment, and with schemes to lease to artists the empty premises that are blighting town centres, the arts could play a major part in reviving the economy, and, as I've said before, give people reasons to be cheerful.