Scottish Budget: Creative Scotland in crisis after 10 per cent Scottish Government funding cut
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Creative Scotland has been targeted in the new Scottish Budget, months after MSPs were told that one in four organisations could be at risk of insolvency over the winter. The body has described the cut in its existing £63 million budget as “extremely disappointing”.
Its board will hold crisis talks next week to try to grapple with the £7m cut for the coming financial year.
Creative Scotland, which had also described “financial fragilities” across the sector, had previously pledged to try to maintain funding for 120 organisations on long-term funding deals until 2025 – if its budgets permitted. It will consider using part of its £17m National Lottery reserves to shore up the impact of the cuts.
The overall pot for culture and major events has been cut by £1.3m in the Scottish Budget. However, extra funding has been found for national arts organisations to help them meet the cost of pay rises and other soaring costs.
Both the National Museums and National Galleries have seen their core funding increase by 9.5 per cent, to £26m and £18m respectively.
Overall funding for Scotland’s national performance companies, including Scottish Ballet, Scottish Opera, the National Theatre of Scotland and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, went up by 0.3 per cent, to £22m.
Creative Scotland's core funding went up by the same amount to £32m. However, this only makes up just over half of its Government support.
An official statement said: “We have been informed that the proposed grant-in-aid budget for 2023/24 will decrease by around £7m, a reduction of more than 10 per cent.
“While this is extremely disappointing, we acknowledge the challenging financial environment affecting all parts of public life and the difficult decisions the Scottish Government is making.
“We welcome the fact that the proposed budget includes stable funding for screen, youth arts and other community initiatives. However, the reduction impacts most significantly on our ability to maintain funding at standstill levels for the portfolio of 120 regularly funded organisations.
“The board meets on December 19 to discuss this draft budget, its implications and to consider the option of using our National Lottery reserves.”