THE ARTS HUSTINGS 2024 ahead of UK General Election

22 June 2024

News & Campaigns

Press Notice – June 20, 2024

What Next? and the Campaign for the Arts announce
THE ARTS HUSTINGS 2024 ahead of UK General Election

The UK’s leading free-to-access movements for the arts and culture are joining forces to convene and livestream a hustings on arts, culture and heritage issues.

Ahead of the final week of the UK General Election, THE ARTS HUSTINGS 2024 will give voters the chance to hear directly from political parties about their commitments to support and develop the arts and heritage in the UK, after an especially challenging period for the cultural sector.

What Next? will invite cultural organisations, individuals, policy makers and freelancers from its chapters across the UK. The Campaign for the Arts will invite members of the public in every Parliamentary constituency, from its supporter base of over 250,000 people nationwide.

THE ARTS HUSTINGS 2024 is open to all and is the only free-to-access arts, culture and heritage focussed hustings at this General Election. It has been specifically designed to get to the heart of arts policy issues across the UK, and to give people the chance to ask the questions that matter to them.

It is supported by the Southbank Centre, the largest arts centre in the UK. The hustings will be livestreamed on the Southbank Centre’s YouTube channel, which has over 110,000 subscribers, and will be available to watch on demand after the event.

Questions for the candidates will be sourced from the cultural sector and from members of the public through What Next? and the Campaign for the Arts.

Event details:

Confirmed representatives:

  • Lord Stephen Parkinson (Conservative Party), Minister for the Arts, Heritage and Libraries
  • Cllr Jack Lenox (Green Party), spokesperson for Culture, Sport & Digital Inclusion
  • Sir Chris Bryant (Labour Party), Shadow Minister for Creative Industries and Digital
  • Baroness Jane Bonham-Carter (Liberal Democrats), spokesperson for Culture, Media and Sport
  • Heledd Fychan (Plaid Cymru), spokesperson for Finance, Culture and the Welsh Language
  • Sian Mulholland (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland), spokesperson for Children & Young People, Arts & Culture and Communities
  • Claire Hanna (Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP)
  • Grant Costello (SNP), candidate for East Kilbride and Strathaven

What Next? and the Campaign for the Arts are following Electoral Commission guidance. Representatives from other main UK parties have been invited and will be confirmed in the coming days.

NOTES FOR EDITORS

About What Next?

What Next? is a UK-wide free-to-access movement that brings together both freelancers, and small and large organisations, to debate and shape the future of the arts and culture in the UK. Our vision is for arts and culture to play a vital role in creating a more equitable society. Through local chapters and UK wide meetings, we convene a space to bring together the breadth of leadership within our sector, where challenge and possibility can lead to shared priorities and collective responses. We advocate and create conditions for ‘systems leadership’: an understanding of leadership that values the potential of a wide range of actors working together to achieve more than we can alone, or in silos. What Next? is not party political as a movement. We want everyone to feel safe and supported in our online spaces. What Next? does not promote or endorse the political views or policies of any one party or any of our speakers, but is committed to using our shared platform to engage with democratic processes. What Next? Is delivered by a small freelance team and volunteers with the support of a small number of Directors of our Limited Company and a wider Leadership Group.

www.whatnextculture.co.uk

About the Campaign for the Arts

The Campaign for the Arts champions, defends and expands access to the arts and culture for everyone. We are an independent charity, free from political and sectarian affiliations, and an alliance of arts-supporting citizens that spans the length and breadth of the UK. Since 2020 over 250,000 people have joined in support of the Campaign for the Arts, including household names such as Grayson Perry, Meera Syal, Gary Lineker and Lauren Laverne. By researching and sharing information, connecting people to opportunities and expressing support locally and nationally, we are working to ensure the benefits of the arts and culture are valued and available to all.

www.campaignforthearts.org

About the Southbank Centre

The Southbank Centre is the UK’s largest multi-arts centre and engages the most diverse audiences of any performing arts organisation in the UK. Our biggest venue, the Royal Festival Hall (2,700 seats) is the lasting legacy of the 1951 Festival of Britain and the ambition and values of that project – that arts, ideas, innovation and culture can heal communities and should be available and accessible to everyone – are still our guiding principles today. The Southbank Centre is uniquely able to offer a wide-ranging, inclusive and world-class artistic programme spanning contemporary visual arts, music, dance, performance, literature, comedy and spoken word across the Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Purcell Room, the Hayward Gallery and our free spaces. We are also home to the National Poetry Library, the National Academy for Social Prescribing (NASP) and six resident orchestras (Aurora Orchestra, Chineke! Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, London Sinfonietta, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Philharmonia Orchestra).

www.southbankcentre.co.uk

For more information, please contact:

Elizabeth Crump MBE, Co-Director, What Next – lizzie@whatnextculture.co.uk

Jack Gamble, Director, Campaign for the Arts – jack@campaignforthearts.org 

0207 187 670

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