Our nation is a world leader in culture and the arts. Innovative, challenging and exciting arts and culture improve people’s lives, benefit our economy and attract tourists from around the world.
Arts and culture strengthen communities, bringing people together and removing social barriers. Involving young people in the arts increases their academic performance, encourages creativity, and supports talent early on.
So it’s important that everyone can experience and take part in arts and cultural activities, whatever their social or economic background.
We recognise the importance of freedom of expression in the arts, which is why decisions about which cultural organisations and projects receive public funding are made independently (or at ‘arm’s length’) from government.
To help keep our arts in their world-leading position, we need to encourage mixed funding from a variety of sources, including philanthropic giving and fundraising, alongside public funding.
To support vibrant and sustainable arts and culture, we are:
- providing funding for the arts in England through Arts Council England
- making sure all young people have access to good-quality cultural activities, as set out in our cultural education summary of programmes and opportunities published in July 2013
- running the UK City of Culture programme
- helping arts and culture organisations find new funding sources, including philanthropy and fundraising, that will, alongside public funding, give them a secure future
- promoting British art around the world through the Government Art Collection
The British Council also promotes British culture abroad.
The introduction of National Lottery funding in 1995 transformed funding for the arts.
From April 2012 we increased the share of National Lottery funding for the arts from 16.67% to 20%. Together with increased National Lottery income, this means that Arts Council England should receive £262 million of National Lottery funding in 2014 to 2015, compared with £151 million in 2010 to 2011.
Arts Council England receives both National Lottery funding and direct government (‘grant-in-aid’) funding:
|2010/11||2011/12||2012/13 (est)||2013/14 (est)||2014/15 (est)|
Government and National Lottery support for the arts will only ever make up part of their overall funding. We are encouraging the development of other sources of income including philanthropic giving (private donations) and independent fundraising.