Aberdeen Art Gallery

– in the Scottish Parliament on 7th November 2019.

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Photo of Tom Mason Tom Mason Conservative

I remind colleagues that I am a councillor in Aberdeen City Council.

Last week the First Minister told me that Aberdeen City Council had never applied for funding for the new art gallery, calling my question “a bit rich”.

However, at 10pm on Friday night, the First Minister’s spokesperson confirmed that in fact the council had applied during the planning stage in 2013. The First Minister was forced to correct the

Official Report late yesterday. Will the First Minister take this chance to apologise for misleading Parliament?

Photo of Nicola Sturgeon Nicola Sturgeon Scottish National Party

I have already written to Tom Mason and the Presiding Officer. It is the case that no approach was made to the Scottish Government or Historic Environment Scotland in the planning phase or business-case stage. An application was made to Creative Scotland.

[Interruption.]

I am trying to answer the question, if Conservative members want to listen.

An application was made to Creative Scotland in 2013, which was not successful. I was not aware of that application when I answered the question. I apologise for that.

However, the allegation that was made last week in Aberdeen that somehow there was political motivation on the part of this Government for funding the Victoria and Albert museum in Dundee but not Aberdeen art gallery is absolutely not true, and I hope that nobody will repeat that accusation.