Labour’s £1bn arts pledge

Labour has promised a “cultural renaissance” with a £1bn new charter for the arts.

The arts policy, which cites a cut in arts and heritage funding across England of £640m since 2010, is being included in Labour’s election manifesto, Jeremy Corbyn said in launching it in London’s Theatre Royal Stratford East last night (Nov 24).

“The arts are a common inheritance that make our society culturally richer and put a smile on all our faces” he said. “We must cherish and protect them.

“The government I lead will ensure that every child has the opportunity to access the arts, learn a musical instrument and develop their creativity. Proper funding for the arts will be central to Labour’s commitment in government to enable people to lead more enjoyable and fulfilling lives.”

The new charter promises to:

  • To invest £1 billion to transform the cultural landscape by upgrading and building new arts venues, galleries, museums and libraries across the UK.
    • To spend £175 million a year on an arts pupil premium to “give every primary school student in the country” access to the arts.
    • To launch a new Town of Culture competition.
    • To invest £1 bn in youth services.
    • To maintain free access to national museums and galleries.
    • To introduce greater transparency in lottery funding, and ensure grants are shared out fairly between all communities.

The singer and song-writer Lily Allen, who was at the launch  said: “The idea that we’ll have access to more galleries and theatres and that children will be able to learn a musical instrument is crucial.

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