Labour’s £1b arts pledge

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Labour has pledged £1 billion for a new Culture Capital Fund if it wins next month’s general election.

The promise appears in the party’s manifesto, which also puts  the creative industries “at the heart” of Brexit negotiations and future industrial strategy.

The Cultural Capital Fund would be administered by the Arts Council to upgrade existing cultural and creative infrastructure “to be ready for  the digital age”. An annual sum of £200m would be distributed to arts organisations over five years.

Labour also promises to reverse cuts to local authorities’ cultural budgets, to ensure the arts are included in EBacc  courses, and introduce  an arts pupils premium to primary schools at a cost of £160m a year.

However, the Conservatives described the Labour promise as "pure Diane Abbot", while culture minister Matt Hancock said the Tories would continue to protect arts funding. He echoed the Labour pledge, saying the priorities were a good Brexit deal, nurturing home groan talent and defending intellectual property.


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