HC Deb 31 October 1974 vol 880 cc6-7W
Mr. R. C. Mitchell

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what arrangements are being made for the completion of the National Theatre.

Mr. Hugh Jenkins

The Government and the Greater London Council have, subject to seeking the necessary authority from Parliament and the council for their respective contributions, reached agreement to provide the necessary resources to complete the National Theatre notwithstanding the further substantial rises in costs which have been encountered. The Leader of the Council, in consultation with the leader of the minority party in the council, has agreed to recommend a contribution up to £1 million or 50 per cent. whichever is the less. on the understanding that the balance of expenditure will be met by the Exchequer.

Yesterday the Government introduced a Bill seeking authority to remove the present statutory restriction on the total Government contribution to enable the building to be completed. It is expected that the Exchequer contribution, due to the rising costs of building, will be in excess of £1 million. New arrangements have been made with the South Bank Theatre Board to control this expenditure. This arrangement is of course subject to endorsement by the Greater London Council and to the enactment of the necessary amending legislation.

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