Alister Jack urges Scottish Ministers to use £97m funding boost to support arts sector
Scottish Secretary Alister Jack has called on the Scottish Government to pass on extra funding from the UK Government to cultural organisations hit by lockdown, after Boris Johnson promised an extra £1.57bn for the arts sector.
The funding will mean an extra £97m for the Scottish Government to spend, with Jack urging ministers to “use this extra money to support Scotland’s vibrant and diverse cultural organisations which have been so significantly impacted by the coronavirus restrictions”.
The move comes after the Scottish Government last week announced £10m in “lifeline support” to help performing arts venues survive the coronavirus crisis.
Created as part of the Scottish Government’s £185m Business Support Fund, the Performing Arts Venues Relief Fund is open to both regularly funded organisations and non-regularly funded organisations.
The new UK Government funding will allow performing arts venues and theatres, heritage sites, historic palaces, museums, galleries, live music and independent cinema to access emergency grants and loans.
It aims to help businesses keep afloat during the pandemic.
Announcing the funding, the Scottish Secretary said: “This UK Government investment in protecting Britain’s cultural, arts and heritage institutions means a welcome £97 million boost for Holyrood.
“I urge the Scottish Government to use this extra money to support Scotland’s vibrant and diverse cultural organisations which have been so significantly impacted by the coronavirus restrictions. The talent and creativity of Scottish arts organisations is renowned throughout the UK and internationally. I know they have the creativity and resilience to bounce back better than ever with the right support.
“This funding is part of an unprecedented package of UK Government measures to support all sectors of our economy through this pandemic. That includes supporting the jobs of nearly 800,000 people in Scotland, including many of those who work in our arts and culture organisations.”