Housing the Arts (Report)

Oral Answers to Questions — National Finance – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 30 April 1959.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mr Kenneth Robinson Mr Kenneth Robinson , St Pancras North 12:00, 30 April 1959

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he has considered the Arts Council Report on Housing the Arts; what assistance he will give towards the three schemes for London for which priority is recommended; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Wiley:

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what action he proposes to take on the Report of the Arts Council on Housing the Arts in Great Britain.

Photo of Mr Jo Grimond Mr Jo Grimond , Orkney and Shetland

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a further statement on the housing of the arts in Scotland.

Photo of Mr Jocelyn Simon Mr Jocelyn Simon , Middlesbrough West

Three parts of the Arts Council's Report on Housing the Arts were published on 23rd April, covering London, Scotland and Wales respectively. A further part, covering the rest of the United Kingdom, will be published shortly. My right hon. Friend shares the view of the Arts Council that time should now be allowed for public discussion of the Report as a whole, and has at present no statement to make.

Photo of Mr Kenneth Robinson Mr Kenneth Robinson , St Pancras North

Does not the hon. and learned Gentleman agree that those recommendations in the Report which concerned London were extremely modest, and that the least that can be expected of the Government is that financial assistance will be given towards the implementation of the erection of the three buildings which are proposed?

Photo of Mr Jocelyn Simon Mr Jocelyn Simon , Middlesbrough West

The important thing now is to list the various recommendations over the country as a whole in order of priority. My right hon. Friend has asked the Arts Council to give him its ideas on that. In addition, it is important that opinion in the country as a whole, and not least provincial opinion, should be ascertained when the next section is available.

Photo of Mr George Jeger Mr George Jeger , Goole

Will the hon. and learned Gentleman promise the House that there will be an opportunity for discussion before any action is taken with regard either to this Report or the one on the provinces—which is expected shortly—in view of the controversial nature of the Report on London and also the controversial attitude of the Arts Council regarding opera and other activities?

Photo of Mr Jocelyn Simon Mr Jocelyn Simon , Middlesbrough West

I know that there are differing views as to priorities in this field, and my right hon. Friend will take account of all the different views put forward—

Photo of Mr Jocelyn Simon Mr Jocelyn Simon , Middlesbrough West

—but any Question as to a discussion in this House should be addressed to my right hon. Friend the Lord Privy Seal.