Can ACE Count?

panta rei dans lullaby

Video - Panta Rei Danseteater 'Lullaby'

Norwegian dance company Panta Rei Danseteater, late last year, conducted a little experiment whereby three dance makers created two pieces with the same name based on the same idea, featuring three male dancers and two musicians, to see what the outcome was.

June 2nd, 2016

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Arts Council England's press release justifying the cuts to Grants For The Arts by 35% (or £29million) contains an interesting mix of apparent contradictions brought about by figures released by Arts Council England themselves.

The press release states that part of the reason for the cut is "a gradual decline in Lottery income over the years." From the figures received from ACE we can determine that this is in fact true. During 1996/97 ACE received £262million from the National Lottery and this figure had been in decline until it hit an all time low of £161million in 2003/2004.

Since then however it has been steadily increasing until the last financial year where it stood at £171million.

Another section of the press release continues;

"Grant in Aid money from treasury has been at standstill for the last 3 years (including current year) so we can no longer afford to "top up" the G4A budget with treasury money, which we have in the past."

So called "Grant in Aid" funding comes directly from the Government (via taxes) and this has also been steadily increasing, according to ACE's own numbers, for the last ten years. In 2003/2004 total funding from the Government amounted to £325million rising to £415million for 2005/2006 an increase of £90million.

To be fair ACE do say the following;

"We must plan ahead for the known drop in lottery income which begins next April and continues for 4 years, over which time the announced £112.5million will be diverted towards the Olympics (this represents 5% of our total (Grant in Aid and Lottery) income per year)."

The only problem is that the cut to Grants for the Arts was 35%. Within the press release mention is also made of fluctuations in Lottery ticket sales (called Lotto in the UK). A spokesperson for Camelot, the company that runs the UK's lottery apparatus, told Article19 that sales of tickets for all lottery games have increased by over £500million over the last 5 years hitting a high of just over £5billion for the 2006/2007 financial year.

Article19 has asked ACE to comment on the apparent discrepancies in their statements.

Update: ACE has responded by not really responding at all, make of this what you will;

"Following our phone conversation re: the perceived 'discrepancies' in the figures: in response, the Grant in Aid standstill refers to the current spending review period, ie the period 2005/06 to 2007/08. Arts Council England's funding for that period is at standstill - its allocation in 2006/07 and 2007/08 is the same as 2005/06. This was announced by DCMS in December 2005."

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