To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the (a) effectiveness and (b) equity of the distribution of the grants awarded under the Culture Recovery Fund; and if he will make a statement.
20 November 2020
The Culture Recovery Fund has so far awarded grants to over 2000 cultural organisations, both big and small, with more funding to be awarded in the coming weeks.
This is public money, so rigorous criteria have rightly been applied to ensure we are supporting organisations that have national and local importance, and those that play a key role in the levelling up agenda. Criteria included applicants being able to show that they have a sustainable, viable plan and that this funding would help them to continue trading. The Arm’s Length Bodies delivering the funding (Arts Council England, British Film Institute, National Lottery Heritage Fund, Historic England) are confident they have applied them in all decision making.
In addition, the independent Culture Recovery Board, chaired by Sir Damon Buffini, was created to increase assurance over the delivery of the Culture Recovery Fund programme, and to bring a range of external expertise across culture, heritage, creative industries and museums sectors to support decision making. The board members' role is to offer regional, sectoral and commercial expertise and to bring rigour to decision-making.
The split of organisations who have already been allocated funding demonstrates a balanced picture across regions. The last round of funding was announced on 7 November and allocated over £33 million to 170 arts and heritage organisations, of which 70% was allocated outside London.