Message to SCAN members about Creative Scotland budget cuts

Arts funding - 28 September 2023

You may have heard this morning that in the Autumn Budget Revision, the Scottish Government has reinstated the budget cut to Creative Scotland of £6.6 million. If passed on immediately it would have resulted in a devasting cut of 40% passed on to regularly funded organisations over the next 6 months. Creative Scotland Board met yesterday and agreed that money would be released from Creative Scotland’s national lottery funding. This means that RFO organisations will be paid as expected for the rest of the year. It means of course that significant resource to support artists and organisations in the future has been even further diminished.

As you can imagine we are devastated at this unexpected reversal, we know how hard our members worked together in campaigning in the springtime and we want to thank you for that work. Despite the shocking news today, we remain inspired and heartened by that experience of working together and by the support of 15,000 members of the public who joined the Campaign for the Arts and the hundreds of people who wrote to their MSPs. We are working with colleagues, many of whom have been giving evidence in parliament this morning, to make the case for culture and in particular to focus on restoring and improving levels of investment in 2024-25 and beyond.

We know that all our members, in whatever role, are firefighting in relation to the cost of living and many are consumed by funding and development work just now. We want you to know that SCAN is here for you, and that we will try to focus our campaigning work in ways that support you rather than make more demands of your time and resources.

The gap between government rhetoric and practical reality in culture funding and policy and strategy grows ever more dramatic. SCAN recognises that leadership in culture can only come from within our communities and it lies with you all and the incredible work you do every day. Thanks for your ongoing support and the time, advice and expertise you share with us.