News story

Public to enjoy £10m worth of treasures saved from export

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Thomas Hardy typescripts, a Welsh landscape by William Dyce and the archives of political radical Thomas Walker are among treasures saved

The annual report of the Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest, published today, highlights thirteen outstanding cultural objects and works of art which came before the Committee between 1 May 2009 and 30 April 2010, with six saved for the nation instead of being exported abroad.

Diverse treasures

The Committee, administered by the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA), made recommendations to the Culture Minister, who placed temporary export bars on the objects of outstanding significance, giving organisations and private individuals in the UK time to raise the necessary funds to purchase them.  The objects encompass a diverse range of fields, from fine and decorative art to theatre and manuscripts.

Publicly accessible

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey said:

“It is fantastic that these important pieces of our cultural heritage have been saved so that the British public may continue to enjoy them. It is particularly satisfying that this process has meant that work such as the William Dyce painting and the collection of Thomas Hardy typescripts will now remain in local areas with which they have a strong association.”

Andrew Motion, Chairman of MLA, said:

“I am delighted that these important objects of artistic, historical and cultural significance have been saved for everyone to enjoy. This scheme has proved to be a highly effective way of ensuring the country’s finest cultural treasures cannot leave our islands before there has been a careful consideration of their value to the nation, and an effort to rally UK-based buyers to keep the most significant items here.”

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