White Paper: ‘Culture is everyone’s right’

Access opportunities to the arts for all, with poorer children benefitting from a new scheme and culture at the heart of a local decision-making, are the key features of the government’s first strategy for arts and culture, as outlined in the White Paper published today by culture minister Ed Vaizey.

 

“This bold new vision will put culture firmly at the heart of everyday life and ensure that everyone, no matter what their background, can access and enjoy our, incredible arts and culture” he said. “It can also help us discover untapped talent that could become Britain’s future stars ion these vibrant sectors.”

The White Paper, the first on culture for more than half a century, wants national arts and heritage funder to come together in a Great Place scheme to back local communities that want to put culture at their hearts. Vaizey said he wanted to see local authorities working together more and sharing experiences and resources. 

Measures are to be introduced that will ensure, in particular, that young people from disadvantaged backgrounds can be inspired through a relationship with culture. Arts Organisations will l be expected to take on apprentices and promote diversity. Funding bodies will be expected to publish strategies for increasing diversity. There is top be more investment in programmes that promote culture overseas – “soft power” – to use to our artistic accomplishments to help promote trade exports and cultural exchange – 8h 2014 museums, galleries, libraries and the arts earned £5.4bn for the national economy -  with a new Cultural Protection Fund to help countries recover from cultural destruction. And mixed funding and partnership are to be encouraged more with anew Commercial Academy for Culture being established to spread commercial expertise in the cultural sectors.  

The last Arts White Paper was published in 1965 by the first arts minister, Jennie Lee, and it coincided with a sharp increase in arts subsidy. This time, the minster said, there will be no new funding for the arts accompanying the policy document.

John Kampfner of the Cultural Industries Federation welcomed the White Paper but said that growth in the sector will only be assured when it is linked to education “and to an all-embracing plan for funding and finance. We are disappointed that this White Paper does not emphasise the inter-connectedness between creative industries companies and arts organisations, and that it does not make the case more strongly for arts teaching in schools” he said.

 

 

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