The arts column: big business pulls the plug
As corporate sponsorship becomes harder to secure, arts organisations are turning to individual patrons for support. Rupert Christiansen reports fopr The Daily Telegraph.
The Thatcherite dream that corporate sponsorship could plug a hole in arts funding has proved
short-lived. Several former major players - Abbey National, BT, IBM and NatWest for example -
have effectively pulled out of the arts altogether, and the RSC, Scottish Opera, the Halle and CBSO are only four of many institutions which have lost out badly in consequence.
Research by the consultancy Arts & Business shows that in the last financial year corporate
sponsorship dropped from £150m to £114m - and all this year's dips and dives should send that
figure crashing a further 20-30 per cent. Put brutally, business is getting fed up with the arts.
There's not enough grovelling or payback, and grand opera or Britart doesn't bring either the
exposure or the coverage that big sporting events afford. click for more
<small>[ 11-08-2002, 19:25: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>