Patrick Grady

Sandra White MSP has today welcomed the Scottish Government's support for The Arches and the staff members who have been affected by it been made redundant by its immediate closure.

Responding to Ms White's question at First Minister's Questions today John Swinney said that the government will do all that it can to help safeguard the future of The Arches.

Ms White, the MSP for Glasgow Kelvin, said: "The Arches is a fabulous multipurpose venue and has contributed greatly to Glasgow being recognised as an international cultural capital – it is vital that we do all we can to get it out of this dire situation.

"My most immediate concerns are with the 130 staff who have been made redundant – so I am encouraged by Deputy First Minister John Swinney confirming today that the Scottish Government will do all it can to help.

"I am now calling on Glasgow City Council, Police Scotland and the management of The Arches to get round the table and see what can be done to either reverse the closure or see what can be done to reopen the doors as soon as possible."

Patrick Grady MP, who last month wrote to Glasgow City Council over concerns about The Arches future, added: "It's very disappointing that the Arches board have been placed in a situation where they felt they had no choice but to go into administration.  

"The Arches is an iconic venue in the city and over 25 years has grown to become one of the most popular and respected arts venues in the country.  It's a popular choice for corporate and conferencing events and makes an important contribution to the city centre economy.

"When the Licensing Board decision was first announced, along with city MP colleagues, I wrote to the City Council and I met with Arches management to explore options that might have helped to maintain the daytime operation of the venue.  Clearly the board has to make a decision based on business viability, but I hope even at this late stage the City Council, Creative Scotland or other stakeholders can find a way to intervene and help save the Arches and the 133 jobs at risk."

Note:

Question and answer from today's First Minister's Questions –
 
Question:
Sandra White MSP "The Deputy First Minister will be aware that the Arches venue in Glasgow city centre in my constituency has gone into administration with potential loss of 130 jobs.
 
"Aside from the fact that the Arches is one of Glasgow's most cultural venues, this is obviously a very worrying time for the staff facing redundancy.
 
"Can the Deputy First Minister assure those affected that the Scottish Government will offer all the support that it can?"
 
Answer:
Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: "Creative Scotland is working hard with the organisation and with other partners to explore options regarding the future of arts programming of this nature in Glasgow.
 
"Creative Scotland agreed with Glasgow Life and Glasgow City Council to bring forward some of this year's support for the Arches - £92,000 from Creative Scotland and £37,000 from Glasgow City Council to assist with the delivery of the current arts programme in the short-term.
 
"I reassure Sandra White that we will look in all ways that we possibly can do to assist in safeguarding the future of what I recognise as a significant cultural venue in the city of Glasgow and a venue that contributes a great deal to the cultural life of Scotland."

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