London Arts Funding Takes Hit By Olympics

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By Carmen Comments

The Bookseller reports that as a result of the UK’s need for additional funds in order to keep pace with its 2012 Olympics plans, arts funding will take a serious hit. Last week, culture secretary Tessa Jowell confirmed that Arts Council England (ACE) will lose 112.5m pounds in forecasted Lottery money, which will now go towards the building of Olympic infrastructure.

ACE, faced with helping to fund a “Cultural Olympiad” planned to run concurrently with the Games, is pushing the government to restore, and increase, funding. But director of media relations Louise Wylie said: “We must face up to the fact that there is a smaller pot of money to go around, and literature will certainly suffer as well as the rest of the arts.” The loss of funds, which begins in 2009, will affect project-to-project grants. ACE’s “regular” funding – three-year block grants given mainly to larger arts organizations – is currently not affected.