8.4.2 Cultural houses and community cultural clubs
Amateur artistic and cultural activities are concentrated in the institutions called cultural houses or clubs, the network of which has been established in Soviet times and covers the whole country. Those institutions were owned by the Ministry of Culture, trade unions and enterprises. The latter both have sharply curtailed their participation in cultural matters and in 2007, 98% of these institutions were within the responsibilities of the Ministry of Culture. Their number is still decreasing: there were 54.8 thousand cultural houses in 2000 and 47.4 thousand in 2009; the number of newly constructed cultural houses is small (from those with seating capacity of 56 300 built in 1990 to those of 8 400 built in 2008; in rural areas related figures are 45 400 and 4 800).
Though cultural houses are the most numerous of cultural institutions their condition has been criticised: in 2003, about one third of all their buildings were officially recognised to be in bad condition and in need of capital repair, while almost all cultural houses need modernisation including computers, etc. Cultural houses are mostly located in rural areas (87% in 2000 and 89% in 2007) where they function as community culture and entertainment centres and dance halls.