General Elections 2024 – Party Pledges For Culture

We believe that culture should be celebrated and accessible in every community across Scotland.

SCAN won’t be telling you how to vote on July 4th, but we have been working our way through the main Party manifestos, and can share with you mentions of cultural pledges from political parties below:

The Scottish National Party would like to see an Independent Scotland which has a place in the EU which means:

  • Freedom of movement to live, visit, study and work freely in any EU country.  
  • Re-entry to the Erasmus+ scheme, widening educational opportunities for Scotland’s future generations.  
  • Access to the Creative Europe scheme, supporting culture sector cooperation and boosting economic potential of our creative industries 

You can read this in page 13 of their party Manifesto.

The Conservative Party state that creative sector tax incentives will remain competitive. When they mention “world-leading creative industries”, this mostly alludes to TV, Film and Music, where they believe creation of apprenticeships will be a key pipeline of talent.

They also pledge to making the most of the opportunities of AI and its applications for creativity in the future. This is stated on page 69 of their manifesto.

Scottish Labour pledge to make sure that the arts and music will no longer be the preserve of a privileged few. On page 109 of their manifesto, they state that culture is an essential part of supporting children and young people to develop creativity and find their voice. They believe that:

  • There is huge potential for growth in the creative industries that would benefit every community in Scotland.
  • There is a role for the Scottish Government to develop clearer career paths in the sector and take steps to encourage investment in Scottish creatives.

In the UK Labour Party manifesto (page85), they state that:

  • They will implement their creative industries sector plan (launched in March 2024) as part of their Industrial Strategy, creating good jobs and accelerating growth in film, music, gaming, and other creative sectors.  
  • Children will be able to study a creative or vocational subject until they are 16, and they will ensure accountability measures reflect this. 
  • Access to cultural assets will be improved by requiring publicly funded national museums and galleries to increase the loans they make from their collections to communities across the country.

The Green Party state that arts, culture and sports are central to people’s enjoyment of life, to their mental and physical wellbeing, and to thriving communities. However, they have been increasingly squeezed out of the national curriculum and subjected to government cuts that are putting many cultural institutions – libraries, museums, theatres and local arts centres – at risk.   If elected the Green Party commit to:  

  • Invest £5 bn investment in community sports, arts and culture over 5 years to keep funding local museums, theatres, libraries and art galleries to ensure they are open and thriving. 
  • Support local grassroots sports clubs, music and art venues. 

You can read this on page 37 of their party manifesto.

You can also access the Scottish Green Party manifesto here.

Liberal Democrats state that art, music, drama and sports bring people together and are an essential part of a thriving society. They pledge to:

  • Invest in the UK’s cultural capital and nurture the next generation of talent. 
  • Support the creative and tourism industries across the UK so that businesses can thrive and people everywhere can enjoy the benefits of sports, music and the arts. 
  • Promote creative skills, address the barriers to finance faced by small businesses, and support modern and flexible patent, copyright and licensing rules. 
  • Establish creative enterprise zones to grow and regenerate the cultural output of areas across the UK.
  • Negotiate free and simple short-term travel arrangements for UK artists to perform in the EU, and European artists to perform in the UK. 

You can read this via the Culture, Media and Sport Link on this page of their website.

Or read page 83 of the Liberal Democrats party manifesto here.


Looking for more guidance? Campaign for the Arts have also published more detail at a UK level here.

You can also watch a recording of The Arts Hustings 2024, organised by Campaign for the Arts – the only free-to-access national debate on arts, culture and heritage issues at this General Election.

In the meantime, don’t forget to vote on the 4th July!