The diversity of the UK’s creative sector must continue to be recognised and supported by the Government, a Lancashire industry leader has urged.
Mark Oulson-Jenkins, Executive Producer at RTR TV, said that arts and culture had as much of a part to play in a thriving industry as areas such as the digital economy.
In the wake of the General Election, a reshuffle within the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) led to concerns of “downgrading the importance of the arts.”
RTR TV is the sponsor of the Creative Business of the Year award at this year’s Be Inspired Business Awards, the BIBAs, one 18 prizes up for grabs at one of Lancashire’s leading business awards.
Mr Oulson-Jenkins said: “The creative industries are among the fastest-growing sectors of the economy, creating jobs at a fantastic rate, and we should not do anything to put this at risk.
“The Government has recognised this and based its policy around publicly-supported arts and commercial business and our success has been based on both.
“I would simply say ‘if it is not broken, do not try to fix it’, I am sure the creative industries and Lancashire and beyond will continue to thrive.”
Following the election on June 8, the Creative Industries Federation voiced concerns after Digital Minister Matthew Hancock removed arts and culture from his remit.
It said any attempt to “downgrade the importance of the arts and creative industries” would “send the wrong signal”.
A DCMS spokesman insisted the creative industries and arts continued to be “hugely important to the UK, both economically and as an integral part of British culture.”
Last week, the Creative Business of the Year judging panel for this year’s BIBAs visited finalists in businesses across Lancashire as they selected the winner of the category.
The finalists included Preston firm Juicy Media, novi.digital, SQ Digital and HotFoot Design which are all based in Lancaster, as well as the category’s 2016 winners, Door 4.
The judging continues until July 12 when the Business of the Year judges, led by BIBAs headline sponsor Cuadrilla, visit finalists.
The winners will be unveiled at the awards’ ceremony at the Blackpool Tower on Friday, September 15.