Paul “Wechtie” Burns on the Cuts

It’s always a good thing to come across a contrary view when the prevailing opinion seems pretty unanimous, especially when that view is well thought out and comes from the grass roots.

Paul Burns reckons many of the funding decisions made by the Arts Council might be correct and explains at length. Go read the whole thing but in summary:

  • It’s been managed really badly. This episode illustrates some serious problems with the way the Arts Council operates. “Many of these decisions may be right, but the process and its lack of transparency is obscuring this.”
  • “Cutting funding per-se is not bad. No arts organisations should receive funding ad infinitum, and no-one working in the arts should expect the government to pay their wage.”
  • “The Arts Council is responsible for arts development in England, which suggests change, renewal, growth and transition – not the maintenance of the status quo.”
  • “Statements about “no confidence” in Arts Council England, or the organisation being “no longer fit for purpose” do not help the arts in any way. What do we replace it with?”

I could go on but I’ll just be reprinting the whole post.

Paul, trading as Wechtie, works in “contemporary dance, music and visual arts” and is currently with DanceXchange. His weblog mostly covers contemporary dance.

Note: when writing to me about this Paul said he’d not mentioned his blog before “as it’s rather niche”. This is the wrong attitude! I’ve been waiting for someone to start a dance-related blog all year! Niche is good!


  1. Thanks for putting this up Pete. Just a quick addendum – I’m not actually saying “many of the funding decisions made by the Arts Council are correct”, just that they might be…we don’t know all the organisations cut and the reasons behind them. Just thought I’d clarify!

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