UK prime minister Boris Johnson launching the Conservative manifesto © Xinhua News Agency/PA Images

The Conservative Party election manifesto, launched yesterday afternoon by the UK prime minister Boris Johnson, pledges the establishment of a £250m fund “to support local libraries and regional museums”. The Tories describe this as “the largest cultural capital programme in a century”.

The manifesto states that the UK “is at its best when it allies its extraordinary design and artistic abilities with science and technology”. It says the planned 2022 Festival of Great Britain and Northern Ireland “will encourage our leading arts and cultural organisations, universities, research institutes and businesses to come together to inspire the next generation in British innovation and creativity”. The event, once dubbed the “festival of Brexit” by Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, was announced a year ago by Theresa Mays administration and is being backed with £120m of government funding.

On education, the Conservatives “want young people to learn creative skills and widen their horizons, so we will offer an arts premium to secondary schools to fund enriching activities for all pupils”. The arts premium will put a further £109m a year into education (the Labour Party manifesto is promising £160m for a similar initiative).

Yesterdays Tory manifesto launch, in Telford, in the West Midlands, includes a pledge for the maintenance of support for “free entry to the UKs national museums”. Both the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrats made similar manifesto commitmentsRead More – Source