HC Deb 23 April 2004 vol 420 cc698-700W
Mr. Nicholas Brown

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will set out, with statistical information relating as directly as possible to the Newcastle, East and Wallsend constituency, the effects on Newcastle, East and Wallsend of her Department's policies and actions since 1997. [166878]

Mr. Caborn

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport seeks to improve the quality of life for everyone through improved access to the best in cultural and sporting activities. The Department also champions the tourism, creative and leisure industries. The Department's policies and actions have had a significant impact on the constituency of Newcastle, East and Wallsend since 1997. For example, Arts Council England funds a diverse range of arts organisations and projects in the constituency, such as Tyneside Disability Arts, Monster Productions and the Foolsyard Theatre. The constituency has received the following grants from Arts Council England since 19971

Financial year Number of grants Total amount
1997–98 18 38,849
1998–99 3 4,710
1999–2000 17 63,124
2000–01 21 71,029
2001–02 13 31,282
2002–03 11 50,267
2003–04 2 110,000
Total 85 369,261

Since 1997, English Heritage has offered the following grants to the Newcastle East and Wallsend constituency1

Date Grant Details
31 March 2004 160,000 Contribution of 19,000 towards Stage 1 project development costs for St. Michael's church, Byker, with agreement to a further £141,000 towards repairs following successful completion of Stage1.
Total 160,000

The Newcastle, East and Wallsend constituency has received the following awards from the National Lottery (granted by the following distributing bodies: Arts Council England, Community Fund, Heritage Lottery Fund, Millennium Commission, New Opportunities Fund, Sport England and the Film Council) since 19972

Financial year Total amount
1997–98 279,481
1998–99 4,248,686
1999–2000 6,348,190
2000–01 3,448,016
2001–02 1,553,619
2002–03 1,781,574
2003–04 1,655,338
Total 19,314,904

Since 1997, the constituency of Newcastle, East and Wallsend has received the following amount of European Regional Development Funds3 for cultural/sport/tourism projects:

Financial year Total amount
1998–99 1,987,498
1999–2000 42,100
2000–01 1,070,000
2002–03 550,000
Total 3,649,598

The Department has allocated £27 million Private Finance Initiative (PFI) credits to Newcastle City Council in order to procure a new city library and three refurbished community libraries. One of these community libraries, High Heaton Library, is based in the constituency of Newcastle, East and Wallsend. The community libraries will be made fully accessible and, as well as being upgraded in terms of layout, decoration and furniture, fittings and equipment, will also enjoy re-engineered display and information facilities.

Sport England has granted exchequer awards of £103,000 to fund Sports Development Workers promoting Active Schools Infrastructure and Equity in Sport across the City of Newcastle since 1997. The constituency of Newcastle, East and Wallsend has benefited from this funding. However, it is not possible to determine how much of this funding has gone directly to the constituency.

Since 1997, the constituency of New-castle, East and Wallsend has benefited from various grants made by the North East Museums Libraries and Archives Council (NEMLAC) within its area. However, it is not possible to determine how much of this funding has gone directly to the constituency. Examples of this funding include: £10,000 to Newcastle, Gateshead, Sunderland, North and South Tyneside libraries and Tyne and Wear Archives for a joint campaign to promote heritage, local and family history services and lifelong learning opportunities in a poster campaign on the Tyne and Wear Metro; Under the auspices of the British Library's Reaching the Regions initiative, British Library staff worked with teachers from the North East to produce Lindisfarne Gospels school packs and resource boxes for distribution throughout the schools and libraries of the North East. Three of these resource boxes are located in Wallsend Library. Reaching the Regions has invested £100,000 in the North East and NEMLAC is a key partner in this venture.

Between 1996–97 and 2002–03, the British Tourism Authority—and from 2003–04, VisitBritain—have been responsible for marketing Britain overseas as an attractive tourist destination. Grant-in-aid is not allocated in respect of individual areas of Britain, but Britain is promoted as a whole in a way that benefits Newcastle, East and Wallsend as it does the rest of the country.

The residents of Newcastle, East and Wallsend also have ready access to a wealth of cultural institutions in Newcastle and Gateshead, including the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, the Sage Gateshead (due to open in winter 2004) and the Discovery Museum. 1Excluding Lottery grants. 2The data has been derived from the Department's Awards Database and is based on information supplied by the distributing bodies. 3One of the EU Structural Funds administered by the Government Offices.