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Brexit: impact on the arts and cultural sector

Brexit, Impact on the arts sector

As we work with many clients in the arts sector here at Consider This, we thought it would be interesting to look into what effect Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union might have on the UK’s cultural sector and share our thoughts and comments on the matter.

What is the industry saying about Brexit?

Maria Eagle, Shadow Culture Secretary, speaking at a debate organized by the Creative Industries Federation this April, warned that leaving the EU would have a “huge bearing on the future health of the creative industries and the arts and culture sectors”.

During her speech she also warned how devastating it would be by leaving the EU and how it would be of the utmost importance to maintain a single market within the EU, one that allows the UK to continue to export its arts and culture to other European countries. “Losing that would only be bad for the creative industries. The creative industries can’t relocate and still create British content, unlike some other industries. They have to be here,” she said, adding the “spirit of openness and inclusivity in the arts sector encapsulates why we should not walk away from the EU”.

What’s more, the UK’s ability to take advantage of the 1.3 billion Euros Creative Europe program could also be in danger and the easy mobility of talent within Europe may no longer exist. At present, the single market totals 56% of all overseas trade in the entertainment sector but that could drop quite dramatically on leaving the EU.

On the other hand, those who campaigned on leaving the EU have claimed that this would have no effect on trading with Europe, in fact the very opposite, allowing more freedom to develop with the existing European relationships while building associations with other non-European countries.

The issue has not only divided a nation but also the government’s cultural leaders; Arts Minister Ed Vaizey, on the side of Remain, says that leaving would be ‘irresponsible’ while the Culture Secretary, John Whittingdale, is fully in favour of exiting.

Our thoughts and comments

At Consider This, we believe that now the nation has made its decision, it is in our best interest to put a stop to this division, come together and unite in facilitating the best future for the arts in a new reality outside the EU. Some of our clients like One Dance UK have expressed similar sentiments; they released a statement following the electorates' decision to leave the EU which stated:

"In the wake of voters’ historic decision for Britain to leave the European Union, One Dance UK will continue to make the case for dance in a new future outside of the EU.

We look forward to playing our part in working with Government to create the conditions to safeguard public and private funding for arts and culture, enabling artist mobility and ensuring we continue to recruit the best talent from Europe and the rest of the world."

This is the beginning of a new era, so let us all play our part in ensuring that it is a prosperous one.

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