HC Deb 26 November 1953 vol 521 c508
23. Mr. Vane

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether his attention has been drawn to the comments in the Arts Council's report for 1952–53, page 19; and what proposals he has to remedy the unsatisfactory state of the privately-founded museums and art galleries housing important collections, where the original foundation is inadequate to meet present-day costs of upkeep.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

Yes, Sir. There is a real problem here, and I have read this recently published report with interest. But, as it points out, there is more than one answer to the problem, and I should hope that, in view of the substantial contributions the Exchequer is already making to the arts, solutions will be investigated which do not involve yet another call on the heavily-burdened taxpayer.

Mr. Vane

Can the Financial Secretary confirm that it is within the power of the Government to do something in this field without legislation?

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

I should want notice of that question, but I should think it was highly improbable.

Colonel Gomme-Duncan

Would my hon. Friend and his right hon. Friend bear in mind that Am Fasgadh, the Highland museum in Kingussie, has hitherto had no support from Government sources whatever?

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

Broadly speaking, central Government support has been given in the past only to national museums, which include the National Museums of Wales and of Scotland, and not to local museums. I am not sure in what category the one referred to by my hon. and gallant Friend comes.

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