Cultural Gifts Scheme gets £10m a year boost

Patrick Steel, 19.03.2014
Budget 2014 sees funding for cathedral repairs and Magna Carta commemorations
The Cultural Gifts Scheme, which allows UK taxpayers to donate works to the public in return for a tax reduction, has received an increase of £10m a year for the next five years, announced in today’s budget by chancellor George Osborne, increasing its overall budget from £30m to £40m per year from April 2014.

The Cultural Gifts Scheme came into force in April 2013 to incentivise lifetime giving and donations of pre-eminent objects to public collections.

The budget will also see £1m go to commemoration events for the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta in 2015, and £20m for a grant scheme for repairs to cathedrals “in recognition of their heritage significance and role in forthcoming remembrance activities to commemorate the first world war”.

Osborne also announced tax relief for theatre productions, with 20% tax relief for qualifying productions, and 25% for regional touring.

This does not affect museums, but Maurice Davies, the Museums Association’s head of policy and communications, said: “People in theatre are already calling this tax relief a game changer. Wouldn't it be clever to extend the scheme still further, to the production costs of museum and gallery exhibitions?”