HC Deb 30 January 1973 vol 849 cc357-8W
Mr. Robert Cooke

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what arrangements are proposed for ensuring the continued support for the arts.

Mrs. Thatcher

The Arts Council will receive, within the resources announced in the White Paper on public expenditure (Cmnd. 5178) and subject to Parliamentary approval, £17.388 million in the next financial year compared with £13.67 million in the current year. Corresponding figures for the British Film Institute are £1.36 million as against £0.94 million. It is also proposed that the crafts should receive £332,000 as against £200,000.

Within the grants for the arts £1 million has been provided in 1973–74 for the further encouragement of the arts in the regions and in Scotland and Wales, with special reference to the assisted areas. A similar sum will be provided for 1974–75. My noble Friend is considering with the Arts Council and the British Film Institute how best to use these additional resources in conjunction with other regional programmes dealing with the environment and the social services.

The acquisition grant administered by the Victoria and Albert Museum to assist purchases by local collections will, subject to Parliamentary approval, be increased to £400,000. The similar grant administered by the Royal Scottish Museum will be increased to £25,000.

My noble Friend announced on 15th January that £30,000 of the Victoria and Albert Museum grant will be available to help the purchase of documents of all kinds, including photographs.

A new fund of £150,000 in 1973–74 administered by the Science Museum will be used to assist the purchase, and where desirable the transport, restoration, and erection, of scientific and technological material by museums in the provinces. The Royal Scottish Museum will administer a similar fund of £25,000.