Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence


Memorandum submitted by Association of North East Councils


  The Association of North East Councils and the North East Assembly welcome the opportunity to contribute written evidence to the Committee's hearing on the Arts Council's proposals for reforming itself. We have strong views on this issue, which we have made known to the Arts Council and also to the Secretary of State.

  You will see from the enclosed that we have some fundamental concerns about the principles on which the changes currently proposed by the Arts Council are based. We consider that the single organisation model, with "regional outposts", does not sit well either with the hitherto successful functioning of the regional arts board in the North East, Northern Arts, nor with the broader devolution agenda. There is a real concern that, amongst other things, under the proposed new arrangements, the regional arts boards will always be looking to the centre rather than to the region, because that is where their funding and powers will come from. We urge reconsideration of the proposals, particularly in the light of the forthcoming regional government white paper.

  I hope you find the attached comments useful, and if you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact me.

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