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United Kingdom/ 8.1 Support to artists and other creative workers  

8.1.2 Special artists funds

The government administers a Public Lending Right scheme (PLR), which remunerates authors (including writers, illustrators, translators and editors) for the number of loans of their books through public libraries. The scheme's aim is to compensate authors for potential loss of sales created by library circulation (now at 5.98p per loan). The maximum annual PLR payout is GBP 6 600. The fund received GBP 7.582 million for 2009/10.

In 1980 there was a voluntary Exhibition Payment Right (EPR) scheme in England and Wales, which remunerated artists for the exhibition of their work in public galleries. However, responsibility for funding was devolved subsequently to the Regional Arts Associations and, when these were replaced by Regional Arts Boards in the early 1990s, the EPR schemes in five regions were dropped. By 1997 only two survived at a regional level in England and one in Wales.

The European Directive on droit de suite came into force in the UK in January 2006 and ensures living artists benefit from a percentage of the resale prices of their works of art. To apply for the scheme, the work needs to be copyright protected, be an original work or a copy made in limited numbers by the artist (or with his / her supervision) and its sale must include a professional party (e.g. art gallery or arts dealer). The benefits will be extended to the heirs and estates of deceased artists in January 2012.

The New Deal for Musicians (NDfM), which started in August 1999, sought to help unemployed musicians or young adults seeking a career in the music industry. NDfM was open to individuals who had been unemployed for six months or longer, and people aged 25 and over who had been unemployed for 18 months or longer. Many of the people on the NDfM programme moved on to allied roles in the music industry, such as managers or stage crew. However, the scheme came to an end in October 2009 and has been replaced by a non-culturally specific programme, the Flexible New Deal.

Some modest voluntary arrangements exist in various sectors, such as resettlement funds for retraining of dancers when their careers are coming to an end.

Chapter published: 15-04-2011

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