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.
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.
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.”