50p for culture campaign launched 10 Apr 2014

NMDC is among the groups supporting the '50p for culture' campaign, which launched in April 2014 to encourage local councils to aim to spend 50p per person per week on cultural activities. 

In a recent poll by Ipsos MORI co-commissioned by the National Campaign for the Arts, 63% of people said they believed that despite cuts local authorities should be investing at least 50p per person per week in arts, museums and heritage.  Only 12% said local authorities should invest nothing.

The NCA says that the average budgeted spend across England in 2013/14 was just 16p.  In 2011/12 the figure was 18p and in 2010/11 it was 20p.  On average, of every £1 invested by a local authority, less than half a penny (0.5%) goes to support arts, museums and heritage.

The campaign invites people to visit the website at www.50pforculture.org, find out the level of spend in their area and contact the local council with appropriate messages of praise, encouragement or calls for improvement. 

Samuel West, Chair of NCA acknowledged the difficulty faced by local councils but said that because spend in the arts is already so small "cutting them won’t balance the books.  Instead, it will make independent cultural organisations unsustainable and could make the UK cultural desert spread".