UK Culture Department â??braced for 50% cutâ??

UK Culture Department â??braced for 50% cutâ??

By Rob Crossley

July 21st 2010 at 10:03AM

Comprehensive downsizing throughout the â??department of funâ??

Britain’s office for culture, media and sport is preparing for staff cuts of up to 50 per cent, according to media reports.

The move is a distressing foretoken to the significant cuts that will strike across the UK’s arts and entertainment sectors.

Newly-appointed Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt has proposed cuts between 35 per cent and 50 per cent of all staff, according to a Guardian report.

The paper says Hunt is looking to make the cuts, and move into a more humble office, as a means to lead by example.

Significant cuts within the culture department echo the equally severe cost reduction operations underway across Btitain’s art industries, which includes videogames.

The coalition government last month confirmed it will axe some, and possibly all, of the UK’s Regional Development Agencies.

As Develop explained in depth the month prior, cuts to RDAs will have a severe ripple-effect on game-focused groups and initiatives. Events such as Game Horizon and State of Independence, as well as funding groups such as EM Media and Game Republic, could all be affected by the drastic measures.

Chancellor George Osborne has initiated extraordinary spending cuts across the public sector as the Lib-Con administration wrestles with a budget deficit above £150 billion.

All government departments have been told by the Treasury to offer cuts between 25 per cent and 40 per cent of total budgets.

The culture department’s budget is at £2.1 billion.