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Written Question
Events Industry: Trade Agreements
22 Jul 2021

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether the Government's proposed trade deals with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein include permit free touring provisions for UK support staff involved in touring activities in the EEA.

Answered by Caroline Dinenage

The UK’s creative industries are the finest in the world and this Government understands that the cultural and creative sectors rely on the ability to move people across borders quickly, simply, and with minimal cost and administration.

On 8 July, the UK - Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein Free Trade Agreement was signed.

The agreement allows UK touring artists, entertainers and support staff to travel to and work in Norway and Liechtenstein for 90 days in any 180 day period, and Iceland for 90 days in one calendar year without the need for a work permit.

The deal was based on the same UK offer that the EU turned down in negotiations. This shows our proposals were workable and our door remains open if the EU is willing to reconsider its position.

To provide further clarity on the arrangements, UK and EEA states plan to issue a non-binding clarification of entry routes for performers, artists and their support staff.


Written Question
Arts: EU Countries
22 Jul 2021

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans he has to work with his counterparts in the EU member states that have more restrictive visa and work permit requirements than those of the UK, to ensure that artists from the UK can continue touring on a reciprocal basis.

Answered by Caroline Dinenage

We have always acknowledged that the end of freedom of movement would have consequences for touring musicians and performers. That is why, as the Secretary of State has said, we have moved at pace and with urgency to provide greater clarity about the current position, including working with our friends in EU Member States, to support the creative sectors tour in Europe with ease.

Member States are principally responsible for deciding the rules governing what work UK visitors can undertake in the EU, and we have spoken to every Member State. We have established musicians and performers do not need visas or work permits for short-term tours in at least 19 out of 27 Member States. This includes France, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and many more. The length of tour permitted without a visa or permit varies across Member States. For many Member States it is for up to 90 days, which will capture the vast majority of tours.

We are continuing to speak to all Member States to encourage them to ensure their rules and guidance are clear and accessible. And we are now working closely with those Member States that do require visas or work permits for short-term tours to encourage them to adopt a more flexible approach, in line with the UK’s own rules which allow creative professionals to tour here easily. Formal approaches have been made to those Member States, and DCMS ministers will play an active role in discussions.


Written Question
Theatre: EU Countries
22 Jul 2021

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer on 25 May to Question 3150 on Theatre: EU Countries, what assessment his Department has made of the varying time limits placed on touring activities without needing visas or work permits offered by the 17 EU Member States.

Answered by Caroline Dinenage

We have always acknowledged that the end of freedom of movement would have consequences for touring musicians and performers. That is why, as the Secretary of State has said, we have moved at pace and with urgency to provide greater clarity about the current position, including working with our friends in EU Member States, to support the creative sectors tour in Europe with ease.

Member States are principally responsible for deciding the rules governing what work UK visitors can undertake in the EU, and we have spoken to every Member State. We have established musicians and performers do not need visas or work permits for short-term tours in at least 19 out of 27 Member States. This includes France, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and many more. The length of tour permitted without a visa or permit varies across Member States. For many Member States it is for up to 90 days, which will capture the vast majority of tours.

We are continuing to speak to all Member States to encourage them to ensure their rules and guidance are clear and accessible. And we are now working closely with those Member States that do require visas or work permits for short-term tours to encourage them to adopt a more flexible approach, in line with the UK’s own rules which allow creative professionals to tour here easily. Formal approaches have been made to those Member States, and DCMS ministers will play an active role in discussions.


Written Question
Musicians: Visas and Work Permits
22 Jul 2021

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent progress he has made on (a) short term visa and (b) work permit requirements for touring artists and support staff since since the publication on the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement.

Answered by Caroline Dinenage

We have always acknowledged that the end of freedom of movement would have consequences for touring musicians and performers. That is why, as the Secretary of State has said, we have moved at pace and with urgency to provide greater clarity about the current position, including working with our friends in EU Member States, to support the creative sectors tour in Europe with ease.

Member States are principally responsible for deciding the rules governing what work UK visitors can undertake in the EU, and we have spoken to every Member State. We have established musicians and performers do not need visas or work permits for short-term tours in at least 19 out of 27 Member States. This includes France, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and many more. The length of tour permitted without a visa or permit varies across Member States. For many Member States it is for up to 90 days, which will capture the vast majority of tours.

We are continuing to speak to all Member States to encourage them to ensure their rules and guidance are clear and accessible. And we are now working closely with those Member States that do require visas or work permits for short-term tours to encourage them to adopt a more flexible approach, in line with the UK’s own rules which allow creative professionals to tour here easily. Formal approaches have been made to those Member States, and DCMS ministers will play an active role in discussions.


Written Question
Theatre: EU Countries
25 May 2021

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, what recent assessment he has made of the potential effect of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement with the EU on the ability of theatre productions that originate in the UK to undertake a continuous multinational tour in Europe.

Answered by Caroline Dinenage

This Government recognises the importance of our world leading creative and cultural industries, including theatre. Touring is a vital part of performers’ careers, providing not only a vital income stream, but also enriching opportunities for cultural exchange across the world. Being outside the European Union does not change this. It does, however, mean practical changes on both sides of the Channel that will require understanding and adaptation.

UK performers and artists are of course still able to tour and perform in the EU, and vice versa. However, we understand the concerns about the new arrangements and we are committed to supporting the sectors as they get to grips with the changes to systems and processes.

As the Prime Minister has said, we're working flat out with the industry, including through the DCMS-led working group, on plans to support the creative sectors tour in Europe. Through our bilateral discussions with EU Member States, we have established that in at least 17 out of 27 Member States some touring activities are possible without visas or work-permits.

In recognition of the value of the cultural and creative industries - including theatre - at Budget 2021 this government announced an additional £300 million of support in England through the Culture Recovery Fund. This extra funding means that our total support package for culture during the pandemic is now approaching £2 billion. These are unprecedented sums.


Written Question
Public Lending Right: Coronavirus
6 Nov 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of allocating additional funding to the Public Lending Right fund to assist authors with falling incomes during the covid-19 outbreak.

Answered by Caroline Dinenage

There are no current plans to increase the overall amount of the PLR central fund in response to the COVID -19 outbreak or more generally. The British Library administers the PLR Scheme on behalf of the Government and the funding level of the PLR would form part of the consideration of British Library’s overall funding at a future spending review.


Written Question
Public Lending Right
6 Nov 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will allocate additional funding to the Public Lending Right fund.

Answered by Caroline Dinenage

There are no current plans to increase the overall amount of the PLR central fund in response to the COVID -19 outbreak or more generally. The British Library administers the PLR Scheme on behalf of the Government and the funding level of the PLR would form part of the consideration of British Library’s overall funding at a future spending review.


Written Question
Writers: Performing Arts
5 Nov 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether his Department has undertaken research on the value added by scriptwriting to the UK creative industries.

Answered by Caroline Dinenage

The Government supports scriptwriters as part of its broader sectoral support for the film sector, in particular through the approximately £70 million provided annually (including Lottery funding) to our lead agency for film the British Film Institute, and its funded partners. This funding supports screenwriting specific opportunities offered as part of the BFI Film Academy and BFI NETWORK, which invest in the next generation of screenwriting talent.

While the Department has not undertaken such specific research, the global box office performance of UK films and foreign productions which draw on UK source material is a good indicator of the value of scriptwriting. Of the top 200 grossing films released worldwide from 2010 to 2019, 26 are based on stories and characters created by UK writers, and collectively these films have earned $19 billion at the global box office,13% of the total.


Written Question
Children's Play: Coronavirus
20 Aug 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what the timeframe is for the reopening of soft play centres as the covid-19 outbreak restrictions are eased.

Answered by Nigel Huddleston

On 13 August, the Government announced that indoor play and indoor soft play venues can open from 15 August. We have also been working with BALPPA, the trade body that represents the industry to develop guidance that lays out detailed measures that should be taken by indoor play and indoor soft play operators to make venues COVID-secure. These include closing ball pits and sensory areas, reducing capacity of venues and soft play frames, regular deep cleaning, pre-bookable timed sessions, increased sanitation, and a rigorous process to support track and trace. Sports and physical activity facilities play a crucial role in supporting adults and children to be active and the Government is committed to reopening facilities as soon as it is safe to do so. Since 4 July other indoor facilities, including some indoor games, recreation and entertainment venues have reopened.


As with all aspects of the Government’s response to COVID-19, we continue to be guided by public health considerations to ensure that as restrictions are eased people can return to activity safely.


Written Question
Sports: Governing Bodies
18 May 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps the Government is taking to protect (a) the Premier League and (b) other sports bodies following the denial by the Saudi Arabian Government of access by the Premier League to legal representation; and if he will make a statement.

Answered by Nigel Huddleston

My officials are working closely with their counterparts in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Trade to ensure the international interests of the Premier League and other UK sports bodies are protected and promoted around the world. We know that the Premier League is a great soft power asset for the UK, and we will continue to encourage relevant national governments to ensure it receives parity of treatment in all international markets.


Written Question
Museums and Galleries
6 Jun 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he is taking to encourage more people to visit museums.

Answered by Rebecca Pow

The world-class collections in our museums help people understand and participate in our culture and heritage, improve wellbeing, and provide learning, education and research. Museums are supported by public funding worth over £800 million annually to support this access. The UK Government remains committed to free entry to the permanent collections of our 15 DCMS- sponsored national museums ,which in total received around 47 million visits in 2017/18 .Additional projects, through Arts Council England (ACE), aim to improve cultural participation for everyone, regardless of their background. For example, ACE funds Creative People and Places which supports participation in places with traditionally lower engagement with culture. The scheme has just announced 79 new places will be eligible to apply for £24 million of funding in 2019 and 2020, to fund projects until 2023/4.


Written Question
Design
22 May 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the gross value added by the design sector in each region of the UK.

Answered by Margot James

The information requested can be found on pages 64-67 of the Design Council’s report The Design Economy 2018 which can be found here:

https://www.designcouncil.org.uk/sites/default/files/asset/document/Design_Economy_2018.pdf


Written Question
Arts: Finance
2 May 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment his Department has made of the effect on grassroots funding for the arts of the widespread theft of the UK creative industries intellectual property rights by the pirate network beoutQ.

Answered by Margot James

We are committed to protecting the IP of our world leading Creative Industries, which is why are continuing to support The "Get It Right" campaign with £2M investment over 3 years. This campaign is part of The Government's Sector Deal which helps educate consumers on the dangers of copyright infringement and directs them towards legitimate sources of creative content online. The HM Ambassador in Riyadh has raised this matter on a number of occasions with Ministers in the Saudi Arabian Government.


Written Question
Cultural Relations
7 Nov 2018

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to promote cultural diplomacy.

Answered by Michael Ellis

We are taking a number of steps to promote cultural diplomacy, working very closely with FCO, the British Council and DIT to ensure that culture is fully integrated into the UK’s diplomatic activities, both at home and in our embassies around the world.

This includes the GREAT campaign, annual Seasons of Culture, formal cultural agreements with other governments, the Cultural Protection Fund and UNESCO cultural conventions. Ministers also undertake regular international visits and hold frequent dialogues with foreign counterparts to strengthen our cultural diplomacy with key partner countries.

DCMS is a leading contributor to the government’s forthcoming Soft Power Strategy, of which culture will be a core part.


Written Question
Culture: Marketing
10 Jul 2018

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent steps his Department has taken to promote UK arts and culture overseas.

Answered by Michael Ellis

We are taking a number of steps to promote UK arts and culture overseas, including through the GREAT campaign, annual Seasons of Culture, formal cultural agreements with other governments and through our membership of UNESCO. Ministers also undertake regular international visits to champion British arts organisations working in other countries and hold frequent dialogues with counterparts from key partner countries.

The department works in close partnership with FCO, the British Council and DIT to ensure the UK culture sector is well supported and promoted by our embassies in countries around the world. DCMS is also a leading contributor to the government’s forthcoming Soft Power Strategy, which is due to be published later this year.