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A 'devolution revolution'

Updated: Nov 22, 2023

Here at Culture Commons, we’ve been thinking a lot about devolution recently. As a policy development and advocacy organisation concerned about the future flourishing of the UK’s creative and culture sectors, we’re interested in how political promises of further devolution of powers from national to local government might impact the creative and cultural life of the UK.

 

In this Extended Briefing we’ll walk you through some of the key moments in the evolution of the devolution agenda for major political parties in the UK. We’ll also start to unpack some of the ways that ‘culture’ has been positioned within recent devolution settlements. Lastly, we’ll share with you our plans to gather thought leader from across the creative and cultural sectors, academia and local government across the four UK nations together to explore what ‘cultural devolution’ might look like in the future in a new open policy development programme.


1) Introduction: Devolution & the creative and cultural sectors

2) The UK Government's approach to devolution & the creative & cultural sectors


3) The Labour Party’s approach to devolution & the creative & cultural sectors

4) How do the two approaches compare?


5) What about the devolved administrations?


6) What next?


You can download a version of this Extended Briefing here.


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Introduction: devolution & the creative and cultural sectors


The rise of the devolution agenda


Since the 1997 Labour administration, devolution has been at the heart of UK Government policy and legislative agendas. For Tony Blair’s Government, this focused on securing agreement for new devolution settlements with the Devolved Administrations on constitutional grounds, grappling with conceptions of regional government, and of course, the establishment of the Greater London Authority (GLA) in 2000. Since the 2010 Coalition, policy direction and language on devolution under a Conservative Government has centred on the concept of ‘localism’; placing decision making, and consequential funding, closer to local communities.


Fast forwarding to 2014, we see the first example of the ‘handshake’ approach to devolution with the first ‘Devo Deal’ agreed between UK Government and a new Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA)[1] - the first English region outside London to take on new powers on spending in areas such as planning, adult skills and transport.

In just under a decade, the UK Government has gone on to deliver bespoke deals with 14 regions in England[2]. The 2022 ‘Levelling Up the United Kingdom’ white paper, the cornerstone of the UK Government’s flagship ‘Levelling Up’ policy, cemented the approach by offering devolution to any part of England that wanted it by 2030[3].


With two new ‘trailblazer deals’ agreed between Greater Manchester and the West Midlands announced in the Spring Budget 2023, it’s also clear that the UK Government plan to ‘deepen’ as well as ‘extend’ devolution. According to the Bennet Institute for Public Policy, 41% of the population currently live in area with some form of devolution, which will increase to 52.4% if all new deals on the table are delivered on[4].


Earlier this year, Labour Leader Keir Starmer and former Prime Minister Gordon Brown launched a new report in 2022 called ‘A new Britain: Renewing our democracy and rebuilding our economy’ (“The Brown Commission”). The report sets out several bold recommendations for both the future of UK’s parliamentary machinery and extensive new powers for local government. We’ll unpack Labour’s proposals in more detail later in the briefing, but firstly we’ll explore how ‘culture’ has featured in the devolution agenda so far.


The impact of devolution on the future of the creative and cultural sectors


We know that local authorities are, despite significant reductions in their overall spending envelopes over the last 12 years, still the largest investors in the creative and cultural life of communities across the UK[5]; to this extent, some might argue that ‘ cultural policy’ is already devolved, with local leaders deciding which creative and cultural assets and programmes get financial support in their own area.


However, as anyone working in these sectors will tell you, national level funding from the UK Government’s own Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) or Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), as well as through Arm’s Length Bodies such as the arts councils and national heritage bodies, are critical to the development of new creative and cultural infrastructures. Furthermore, other national level funding policies and funding pots offer important ‘levers’ in the development of creative businesses, including through finance and support programmes running through the newly established Department for Business & Trade[6] and now Department for Science, Innovation & Technology.


Therefore, given the current centralised and cross-cutting system of spend and investment in the UK’s creative and culture sectors, cross-party commitments to ‘further’ and ‘deeper’ devolution deals across England are highly likely to have several significant direct and indirect impacts on the UK’s creative and cultural sectors. At Culture Commons, we believe that the devolution proposals set in-train by the major political partiesthrow up several critical questions for the future policy direction and funding support for the UK’s creative and cultural sectors.


Though the why for devolution may have been well articulated[7], no political party, research institution or industry body has yet managed to outline how ‘cultural devolution’ might work, when it will happen, who will be involved and, most critically, what it will look like in practice.


We strongly believe that now is the time to promote more open and practical conversations to understand the potential impacts that devolution could have on the UK’s creative and cultural ecosystem, local places and national level funding bodies. Alongside partners, we intend to begin proposing workable policy solutions ready for a world in which local government is likely to have a much greater say in cultural investment.


This briefing represents a step on that journey, peeling back the layers of both the UK Government and Labour Party positions on devolution to explore what approaches and ‘promises’ have been made that, if delivered on, could impact the current funding and policy structure for the creative and cultural sectors.


The UK Government’s policy approach to devolution and the creative and cultural sectors 2022-23


Culture at the heart


In the aftermath of the pandemic, in the much-anticipated 2022 white paper ‘Levelling Up the United Kingdom’ (“the Levelling Up paper”), the UK Government positioned ‘culture’ as a central prong in their policy goal to reintroduce ‘pride of place’ in every part of the UK [8]. The significance of the creative and cultural industries to the levelling up agenda is perhaps best highlighted by the fact that, since the launch of the £4.8 billion Levelling Up fund in 2020, it is estimated that, following the round three allocation in January 2023, £594m has been allocated for capital programmes related to creative and cultural sectors in local areas[9]. At least in the short-term it’s hopeful that such levels of investment will continue; the Chancellor’s Spring Budget of 2023 promised a further £1.6 billion to levelling up projects across the regions in 2024.


As part of their wider Levelling Up agenda the UK Government committed to “significantly increase cultural investment outside of London”. To achieve this, building on the Art’s Council England’s pre-exiting ‘Priority Places’ framework, DCMS identified 100 ‘levelling up for culture’, local authorities outside of London, that would be the focus for additional ACE engagement and investment[10]. While many have welcomed further approaches to increase investment in areas outside the UK’s dominant centres and Core Cities, this approach seems to have missed a crucial opportunity to consult with regions on such designations, particularly in the context of the Government’s wider promises on devolution.


The Levelling Up white paper also re-emphasised the Government’s commitment to devolution by offering a ‘deal’ for ‘every part of England that wants one’ by 2030. As well as offering devolution to new areas, including new ‘County Deals’ in nine areas across England[11], the government has also committed to ‘deepening devolution’ in areas with pre-existing devolved powers. This included a promise to deliver ‘trailblazer’ deals for Greater Manchester (GMCA) and the West Midlands (WM)[12] while inviting other Metro Mayors to bid for “sweeping further powers[13]as part of a simplified devolution framework.


In a speech at the Convention of the North in January 2023 which the Culture Commons team attended, the Secretary of State for DLUHC, Michael Gove, underlined the Government’s commitment to both ‘deepening’ and ‘extending’ the devolution programme. Shortly after announcing new mayoral development corporations (a statutory body with the power to develop land within a defined area) within the Tees Valley, and teasing extension of the Affordable Housing programming to GMCA and WM, Gove indicated said:

“We are also looking to devolve more control over further and technical education, transport, trade, culture and employment support.”[14]

Spring Budget 2023 confirmed that each area would receive multiyear funding settlements at the next spending review[15] setting out:

“These settlements will…cover their funding for devolved policy areas, including local growth and place, local transport, housing and regeneration, adult skills and retrofitting buildings to drive decarbonisation…”[16]

As well as confirming these expected deals, the Spring Budget 2023 also set out a “new wave of devolution deals” across 23-24, a commitment to extend the business rate retention scheme to local areas in the next Parliament and announced that responsibilities for economic growth, held since 2010 by Local Enterprise Partnerships[17], (LEPS) would be transferred back to local authorities. As we explored in a recent paper on ’Creative Improvement Districts’[18], fiscal incentives such as the exemption of business rates, and governance models that engage local business (such as LEPs), can be vital tools in supporting the growth of local creative and cultural firms while providing growth opportunities for the local economy.


As more control over the use of these functions is given back to local government, we’ll be interested to understand how ambitious local authorities can use these to enable the flourishing of creative firms in their local area, while provider wider socio-economic benefits and ensuring that partners with local businesses are maintained.


In the context of the Government’s new ‘trailblazer deals’, as well as Michael Gove’s confirmation that cultural policy may play a part in them, we want to understand what ‘further cultural powers’ the UK Government could extend to local areas to give them greater control over specific creative and cultural policy and spend.


We believe that further thought needs to be given to the future role of Arm’s Length Bodies and cross-sector support funding in any new arrangement to ensure institutional expertise, strategic oversight and investment support is not lost. We also want to explore how joined up working across England can continue to be promoted alongside increases to local autonomy.


A spotlight on the Creative Industries


In 2021, the creative industries were featured as one of four key sectors in the UK Government’s ‘Plan for Growth’ as “critical driver(s) of innovation and growth[19]. As a result, in February 2022, the UK Government targeted an additional £50 million across key businesses in the creative industries[20], including £18 million of funding for ‘The Creative Scale Up Programme’ and the promise of a ‘Sector Vision’ which was due to be published that year; given the turbulent challenges at the political level we’ve been seeing, we’re still waiting for that plan to be released.


At Spring Budget 2023, the creative industries were specifically recognised as one of five “high growth sectors” with the UK’s economy. As part of plans to stimulate growth, is a refocused ‘Investment Zones’ package, with £80 million over five years to “catalyse 12 potential knowledge-intensive growth clusters, including the creative industries, across the UK[21]. As with the approach for digital technologies, life sciences and green industries, the Spring Budget also confirmed that the government’s newly appoint Chief Scientific Advisor, Dame Angela McLean, will kick off a review to support an innovation-led approach to regulation for the creative industries. For a full analysis of the range of measures relevant to the creative and cultural sectors, see Culture Commons Snap Briefing: Spring Budget 2023.[22]


In addition, given the Chancellor’s recent recognition of the role of the creative industries within the UK’s economy, we’d like to see further, open discussion on how the creative industries can play a part in the proposed ‘Investment Zones’; could they be the right vehicles to promote creative and cultural sector development or are they barking up the wrong tree? We’d like to propose that the development of such Zones simply cannot follow the purely economic models we saw pursued in the 1980s; we must understand how the government will ensure such targeted investment delivers wider social and environmental spill overs to for all local communities to address local policy priorities.

The Labour Party’s approach to devolution and the creative and cultural sectors


Since the announcement of the UK Government’s ‘Levelling Up’ approach, Labour has been a consistent critic, not of the policy intention itself, but the Conservative Party’s approach to achieving it. Shadow Secretary of State for DLUHC, Lisa Nandy has questioned the methodology in allocating the Levelling Up funding rounds and, on many occasions, termed it “a hunger games”[23] approach that pits local authorities and local areas against each other to apply for investment.


In recent months Shadow Secretary of State for DCMS, Lucy Powell has directed criticism at the UK Government’s failure to centre the creative industries within the UK’s growth ambitions. At a Creative UK event earlier this year, Powell claimed that the government had taken the creative industries “for granted”[24] before setting out Labour’s alternative approach; a five step “Creative Compact” plan. It is not yet fully clear what concrete policy recommendations this plan will involve, but in an expansive thread on social media, Powell indicated that it will involve centring the creative industries, particularly digital innovation, at the heart of the UK’s GDP growth and international trade offer[25], while ensuring that ‘creative clusters’ grow equally across all areas of the country.


Although the Shadow team continue to hint at Labour’s future policy positions, it has been through an independent report, launched at the close of last year by a former Labour Prime Minister, where we have seen the biggest hint at Labour’s future policy direction.


In December 2022, the Commission on the UK’s future, chaired by former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, set out an alternative approach that Labour could take to address the UK’s significant regional inequality. ‘A new Britain: Renewing our democracy and rebuilding our economy’ (“The Brown Commission”), co-launched on the 5 December 2022 with Keir Starmer, sets out radical plans for wholesale constitutional reform to the UK. It includes plans not only to reform the House of Lords but to also develop a new constitutional statute for the UK, guiding how political power should be shared within it.


The Brown Commission contends that this statue should make it clear that “political, administrative and financial autonomy of local government should be respected by central government”, contain a requirement to “rebalance the UK economy” and “require decisions to be taken as close as... close as possible to people affected by them[26]. As well as these headline measures, the paper set out over 40 separate recommendations on how the party proposes to grow the economy while “putting power and opportunity closer to each citizen[27].


Below, we have identified five key recommendations proposed by the Brown Commission that we believe will have direct and indirect implications for the creative and cultural sectors.


1) New powers for local areas


In Chapter 7 of the report, the Commission sets out proposals to devolve further powers across the English regions. Recommendation 6 of the report sets out:

Towns and cities across England should be given new powers to drive growth and champion their areas.”[28].


The raft of proposed powers include: those over skills & further education to deliver “full employment and good jobs”; those over transport and infrastructure, energy and the environment to generate wealth in the community; those over housing and development; around childcare and – crucially to develop culture and encourage well-being and sport. Under these proposed powers over culture, Labour float two approaches which would have significant impact for the UK’s creative and cultural sector:


“National decisions on culture funding are highly centralised, meaning local but lesser known bodies and institutions risk being overlooked. We therefore propose more devolution of these decisions, either to local leaders directly or as a shared responsibility with Arts Council regional offices… National funding streams on culture should be done on a collaborative rather than competitive basis, bringing places together not pitting them against one another”[29]


Here at Culture Commons, we have long argued that decision making on culture needs to include meaningful engagement with local people, but we believe that further work is needed to address how exactly such an extension of powers will work. Much like the proposed devolution of cultural policy floated by the UK Government, we need to figure out policy and operational answers to several key questions including; what ‘new powers’ could be devolved to which ‘layer’ of local government? What will be the ongoing role for Arm’s Length Bodies? How do we create mechanisms for local accountability while protecting critical strategic approaches to funding and policy development?


2) New ways of working and governance levels for local areas


Unlike the current Conservative administration, who have so far proposed that powers be transferred down to Mayor Combined Authorities, The Brown Commission suggests recommends that central government should “not take a prescriptive view on which bodies should have what powers[30]. Yet, while the Commission’s report has not been clear what statutory or non-statutory bodies these powers should be devolved to, they propose that any arrangements should be “collaborative” and “partnership” based.


Recommendation 10 of the report goes on to set out that “there should be an economic growth or prosperity plan for every town and city to contribute to our shared prosperity, owned by Councils, Mayors, towns and cities working in partnership” [31]. To deliver this, the Commission argues, both local and regionalpartnerships will be needed. Local partnerships could be “groups of local authorities coming together based on the economic and physical geography of the area..” who would be able to “…take on greater powers, but would not have to adopt a Mayoral model to do so[32]. In a similar vein to the UK Government’s proposed approach, the Commission suggests that Local Enterprise Partnerships should be integrated into these new local partnerships, effectively seeing local leaders responsible for industrial strategies locally again.


To complement this, the Commission contends that new regional partnerships[33] should be formed to provide a coordinating approach across the regions. While the Commission does not prescribe who and howthese partnerships should be structured, the Commission is clear that partnerships should be “locally determined” and “given time to build gradually alongside increasing power and responsibility[34]. The paper gives some current examples, such as the Convention of the North and the West Gateway, of non-statutory strategic governance working well. It also hints at the role such regional partnerships could play; helping perhaps “to overcome complicated market facing challenges of attracting foreign direct investment (FDI)”, “developing clusters and their supply chain and labour markets” while also “ensuring greater coordination on pan-regional transport and infrastructure[35].


A strategic planning framework, the paper also teases, could be pursued by such partnerships[36]. Lastly, the Commission suggests that a unifying body, such as a Council for England[37], could have a role in encouraging the formation of such regional partnerships; identifying where strategic gaps exist across England and making representations to the UK Government and UK Parliament.


Taking these proposals into account, we pose the questions: how can local governments work together under a new self-determined model of partnership working, to strategically support the creative and cultural sectors over a wider geographic area? How might the creative and cultural sectors play a role in larger region-wide growth ambitions?


3) New financial independence for local government


Recommendation 12 sets out that local government should be given “greater financial security”[38] and offered, at a minimum, three-year settlements and block grant funding that “consolidates funding streams”from different central government departments”[39].


Given the 60% reduction in overall budget local government have faced in recent years[40], Culture Commons supports any proposals to extend the amount, and duration, of funding to local authorities. Yet, as advocates for the creative and cultural sectors and in full recognition of the competing priorities local governments continue to face, we’d like to explore how continued investment and funding in local cultural priorities can be assured under a new model. For example, might a new statutory requirement for culture, or new rights of citizens to access culture as part of constitutional reorganisation help to ensure continued investment in our sectors?


4) Greater Community participation


Recommendation 15 then outlines the Commission’s approach to devolution by suggesting that there should be “double devolution that pushes power closer to the people[41]. Again, while the commission have given no concrete mechanisms for enabling this, they suggest that communities should have a say on heritage assets, in shaping local service provision and that there should be greater use of deliberative and participatory processes at the local level[42].

We welcome the commitment to ensure that local communities are better and more robustly involved in decision making that affects them. Given increasing evidence of the benefits of co-creation in cultural programming and spend[43], Culture Commons have been calling for the creation of a mechanism to enable dialogue between local citizens, creative practitioners and decision makers, such as our call for a ‘Culture Forum’ which could be just one way to bring the public and key stakeholders together to co-cultivate the creative and cultural ecosystem in their locality[44].


We believe that further collaborative work is needed to address the practical mechanics behind how such a mechanism would function. What local government level can people most meaningfully have their say on cultural policy? What type of decision-making powers should any new mechanisms that include the public have, if any? How will such mechanisms be funded over the longer-term?


5) A role for Creative Industries ‘Clusters’


Throughout the paper, the Commission continually refer to “clusters of connected industries[45] as key to providing growth across the UK. For the Commission, clusters of “new economy firms[46] developing leading innovative UK approaches from A.I to clean technology, will be central in everything from lowering the cost of living, to creating higher skilled jobs to building stronger high streets locally; while ensuring “wealth created in new industries is spread locally[47].


Regarding the creative and cultural sector within this, The Commission states;

“Creative industries are also a fast growing sector of the economy, with real export potential. Learning from the success of Media City in Salford, government should work with local leaders to identify and nurture future creative clusters like film and gaming…”[48]

‘Creative Clusters’ as a concept have been gaining popularity among the sector in the past five years. While UKRI have invested £80 million in nine ‘creative clusters’[49] across the UK, the PEC have done extensive work in defining what and who constitutes a ‘cluster’ and increasing ’micro-clusters’[50], while identifying where these predominately lie across the English regions, including suburban and rural locations[51].


At the local level, GMCA have recently begun work on some pioneering work to identify ‘Creative Improvement Districts’ within the Greater Manchester area and have supported their early establishment in Stockport and Rochdale, with other boroughs looking set to follow.


Last year, Culture Commons were commissioned by the University of Manchester to explore examples of ‘culture led regeneration’[52] over the past decade to understand what models, processes and outcomes best enable the flourishing of high quality cultural-led regeneration in local place. We found that more thought is needed to make sure that investment in cluster-like models and the industries within them deliver a full range of social, economic and environment ‘spill overs’.


In the context of the devolution proposals explored above, and given the wealth of research and experience already present in the sector, we wonder how Labour envisages that local government will be supported to identify such clusters in their area as well as how local and regional partnerships could work together strategically to grow the UK’s creative offer.


How do the two approaches compare?


Agreement in rhetoric but a vacuum in delivery


At least at an initial glance, both the UK Government and the Opposition (if they embrace the full range of the Brown Commission’s recommendations) are agreed on the need for both ‘further’ and ‘deeper’ devolution across the English regions. Both have made promises to hand over more powers to local government, including those over culture. Yet for us, neither have set out clear thinking on what this will involve and how several critical policy and operational questions, including those we’ve posed above, will be addressed.


While both parties have promised to centre the creative industries as part of a UK growth agenda, beyond the UK Government’s extension of audio-visual tax relief at the Spring Budget this year and Labour’s early discussion of a ‘Creative Compact’, neither have presented the industry with concrete policy or financial commitments to substantiate their stated ambitions. Perhaps most importantly, neither party has indicated how ambitions for growth of the creative industries will work hand-in-hand with the devolution agenda. How can the UK sustain a national strategy and maintain a competitive offer as a world leader in the creative industries in the international markets while devolving more powers, and more of say, over industrial growth to local areas?


Despite commitments in the Levelling Up paper to “make it easier for local people and community groups to come together, set local priorities and shape the future of their neighbourhoods[53] we have seen little from the UK Government in terms of how it plans to extend devolution to local communities. Although the Brown Commission is bolder in the vision for a “double devolution”, it falls into the same trap of vagueness, particularly when it comes to ‘cultural devolution’.


Few alternatives to competition-based funding


Lastly, while Labour have openly criticised the government’s approach to Levelling Up and competition-based funding model per se, little thought has so far been given to the design of an alternative framework (or a supporting evidence-based methodology) to replace the current system. At Culture Commons, we’ve begun to consider approaches for a more ‘purpose driven’ approach to cultural investment to ensure mutually enforcing cycles of perpetual underinvestment are broken. We believe that now is the time to consider how local areas, receiving newly devolved responsibilities for culture, can be supported to facilitate local investment on their patch and how any remaining national streams, including via arm’s length bodies, can work in tandem with them.


What about the Devolved Administrations?


Of course, as a devolved matter, Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales hold responsibilities for policy impacting the cultural and creative sectors. However, the sectors remain impacted by a wealth of ‘reserved’ policy decisions, which as identify above, also have indirect impacts on the flourishing of these sectors Indeed much like the English regions, each devolved administration also faces the same questions concerning the future of local devolution that identified in this paper. They too must consider how decision making can reach the local level, in the context of a longer - and politically sensitive - chain of devolution from Westminster.


The Brown Commission sets out a range of proposals to further enshrine autonomy for the DAs and, crucially, discusses a range of further extensions of functions and responsibilities to each administration separately, including options for pushing power closer to local communities[54]. Indeed, we know that Scottish Labour, in particular, continue to press Holyrood to explore further decentralisation for, and regional coordination within, Scotland’s 32 local authorities.


While this briefing does not afford us the opportunity to discuss approaches to local devolution across each of the devolved administrations, we know that all of our critical policy and operational questions triggered by the increased policy emphasis on English devolution, have real relevance and possible implications to the devolved administrations.

We therefore believe that the issues concerning further devolution within English regions, and the subsequential impact of them on the creative and cultural sectors, are equally pressing considerations for the devolved administrations. Answering them will require better, sustained dialogue not only with central government but local government across Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. In this way, we believe that we need to work collectively across all four nations.

What next?


Whoever takes power in 2024, it’s clear that further and extended devolution is imminent. We need to start to think practically and seriously to ensure that devolution works for UK’s creative and cultural sectors, enabling our industries to become more equitable and inclusive, while making the most of the changing policy landscape to deliver the change that’s needed across DCMS subsectors.


This is why, over the next 18 months, Culture Commons is gearing up to lead an ‘open policy development’ programme, designed to address some questions that recent political ambitions have generated.



We want to work with academics, sector stakeholders and local government representatives to address some of the questions and concerns we’ve posed here across five themes: devolution, creative clusters, purpose-based funding, local voice and culture for all and start collaboratively shaping evidence-led policy solutions that could help ensure devolution works for the creative and cultural sectors.


If you’d like to find out more about our policy co-design programme, or partner with us in this work to help shape the policy questions and solutions, we’d be delighted to hear from you: please contact alanna.reid@culturecommons.uk.


 

Footnotes

[1] See https://www.instituteforgovernment.org.uk/explainer/english-devolution [2] As of April 2023, with a further 3 proposed deals and two new trailblazer deals awaiting negotiation. See https://www.instituteforgovernment.org.uk/explainer/english-devolution & House of Commons Library, Devolution to local government in England [3] HM Government ‘Levelling Up the United Kingdom’, [4] Newman, J & Kenny, M, Devolving English Government, ‘Devolving English Government’ 2023 [5] Local Government Association, ‘Cornerstones of Culture’ [6] Previously, Department for Business, Invocation and Environment (BEIS) and Department for International Trade [7] For a full coverage of the argument for devolution in England see Newman, J & Kenny, M, Devolving English Government, ‘Devolving English Government’ 2023 [8] HM Government ‘Levelling Up the United Kingdom’, p207 [9] As estimated by Arts Professional in January 2023 [10] See the Arts Council England’s Priority Places here https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/your-area/priority-places-and-levelling-culture-places [11] HM Government ‘Levelling Up the United Kingdom’, p235 [12] See our blogpost on the Trailblazer Deals here, https://www.culturecommons.uk/post/snap-briefing-what-could-today-s-trailblazer-devolution-deals-mean-for-uk-culture-creativity [13] HM Government ‘Levelling Up the United Kingdom’, p235 [14] Levelling Up Secretary's speech to the Convention of the North, 25 January 2023 [15] Coincidentally the next SR period is not set until after the 2025 General Election [16] HM Government Spring Budget p70 [17] See https://www.instituteforgovernment.org.uk/article/explainer/local-enterprise-partnerships [18] See our paper on Creative Improvement Districts here, https://www.culturecommons.uk/post/creative-improvement-districts [19] HM Government ‘ Plan for Growth’ [20] See https://www.gov.uk/government/news/50-million-of-government-investment-announced-for-creative-businesses-across-the-uk [21] HM Government Spring Budget p68 [22] See our Snap Briefing on the Spring Budget 2023 here Snap Briefing here, https://www.culturecommons.uk/post/snap-briefing-spring-budget-2023 [23] See https://www.standard.co.uk/news/politics/lisa-nandy-german-whitehall-government-barnsley-b1028268.html [24] See https://www.designweek.co.uk/issues/27-february-3-march-2023/shadow-culture-secretary-condemns-governments-complacency/ [25] See https://twitter.com/LucyMPowell/status/1631711384818917385 [26] Paraphrased from the full list of new constitutional proposals set out in chapter 6 ‘A new Britain: Renewing our democracy and rebuilding our economy’, (p66-74) [27] See ‘A new Britain: Renewing our democracy and rebuilding our economy’, p11 [28] Ibid p75 [29] See ‘A new Britain: Renewing our democracy and rebuilding our economy’, p80 [30] Ibid p75 [31] Ibid p87 [32] Ibid [33] See ‘A new Britain: Renewing our democracy and rebuilding our economy’, p88 [34] Ibid p90 [35] Ibid p88 [36] Ibid p89 [37] Ibid See p.123 for further description of function and membership of the Council [38] Ibid p94 [39] Ibid [40] Newman, J & Kenny, M, Devolving English Government, ‘Devolving English Government’ 2023, p.29 [41] Ibid p99 [42] See p.98 for the full list of proposed approaches [43] See, for example, the Local Trust funded ‘Creative Civic Change Programme’ [44] See our Creative Workforce Pledge and Culture in Crisis: Recommendations for Policy Makers which we share with the UK Government at an event in the UK Parliament in May 2022 alongside the Centre for Cultural Value [45] Ibid P59 [46] ibid [47] P56 [48] P80 [49] UKRI, The Creative Industries Clusters Programme [50] See https://pec.ac.uk/blog/small-engines-of-growth-understanding-creative-microclusters [51] For example : https://pec.ac.uk/discussion-papers/creative-clusters-and-sparse-spaces [52] See our report on culture-led regeneration models here, https://www.culturecommons.uk/post/creative-improvement-districts [53] See the UK Government’s Levelling Up the United Kingdom, p215 [54] See chapter 8 : A new Britain: Renewing our democracy and rebuilding our economy’, p00

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