HC Deb 20 January 1986 vol 90 c18
26. Mr. Murphy

asked the Minister for the Arts what is the proposed level of funding for the Eastern region arts association for 1986–87; and what percentage change this represents since 1979.

Mr. Luce

It is for the Arts Council to determine the level of funding for individual regional arts associations. The 1986–87 funding level for Eastern Arts has not yet been announced.

Mr. Murphy

I thank my right hon. Friend for that reply. Does he recognise that since this Government came to power the increase in real terms in the eastern area has been 50 per cent.? Does he agree that that gives the lie to Opposition claims about lack of commitment by this Government to the arts?

Mr. Luce

I can confirm to my hon. Friend that between 1979–80 and 1985–86 there was a real increase of over 50 per cent. in the allocation to Eastern Arts. As my hon. Friend says, that is a real demonstration of the Government's strong commitment to the arts.