Letter: Scant evidence of a commitment to the arts

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CONTENTIOUS though this view has become, I still firmly believe there is no substitute for government subsidy of the arts, so I warmly support this newspaper's campaigning call to the Chancellor that he should exempt from tax any donations made by individuals to the arts.

But the crisis in the arts is the result of almost six years of "stand- still funding". In this debilitating situation, all arts organisations are struggling to survive. I am concerned that, were the Chancellor to implement this measure, he might think the arts issue solved. Inevitably the big metropolitan companies would be much better placed to attract private tax-free donations than smaller companies.

Surely then, we must continue to ask for a solution to the whole problem of under-funding which is nationwide.

Trevor Nunn

Royal National Theatre

London SE1