Arts Council announces cuts and raids the Lottery bankmain
Arts Council England announced today that it has taken extraordinary measures to avoid a 17% funding cut from 2015/16. By dipping into National Lottery revenues, which it manages, the ACE will restrict the cuts to two percent.
The bad news/good news ploy was used to disguise a flagrant raid on Lottery money, which has been been firewalled until now for new buildings and projects under a principle known as ‘additionality’. By blurring those lines, the ACE has opened the door to a dangerous precedent – the prospect that, under a future Government, the state might withdraw altogether from funding the arts and leave their maintenance to the vagaries of Lottery income.