on Culture, Media, Sport & Tourism
GENERAL ELECTION 2005:
LIBERAL DEMOCRAT MANIFESTO FOR
CULTURE, MEDIA, SPORT AND TOURISM
Charles Kennedy MP
4 Cowley Street
020 7222 7999
Successive governments have undervalued the arts, culture and heritage, but Liberal Democrats
have a proud tradition of championing them, which I am determined to maintain.
Civilised societies value culture for its own sake as well as its undoubted bene ts to other
areas, such as the economy, health, crime prevention and education and creating a sense of
community. It is an important part of personal development too.
Liberal Democrats are rm supporters of freedom of speech. It is right that our art and culture
should sometimes ruf e feathers, challenge the status quo and make us all, and politicians in
particular, feel uncomfortable at times.
But under Labour, we’ve seen excessive Government interference in the arts. We oppose the
way this Government has chipped away at the principle of keeping cultural organisations at
arms’ length. Liberal Democrats would give the arts, culture and heritage real independence.
We would start by restoring the National Lottery funds’ independence, ensuring that never
again can Government dictate which schemes lottery players’ money is spent on.
Under Labour, the Arts Council’s core budget will be frozen. Because of the value we place on
the arts, we would reverse this freeze and ensure core arts’ funding at least matches in ation.
Sport too is essential for the nation – inspiring, entertaining, and encouraging tness and
healthy living. At grassroots we will encourage amateur sports clubs and ensure that regular
physical activity for all children within the school curriculum. We are ambitious for Britain as a
sporting nation and wholeheartedly back the London bid for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic
Liberal Democrats have also been unashamed supporters of one of the nation’s greatest
cultural institutions – the BBC. We will