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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Applied Arts up in Arms

Applied Arts up in Arms
'What doesn't get counted, doesn't count'
Commonty readers may have already picked up on the Department of Media, Culture and Sport who are busy reclassifying the creative industries, with the proposal that 'Crafts' be removed as a category.
The Crafts Council are, quite naturally, a little riled by this: 
see their website for more comprehensive info here and a petition has been set up by Applied Arts Scotland.
Pickled DNA by Louis Thompson

"So why is DCMS proposing to remove crafts? The consultation says:
"Most crafts businesses are too small to identify in business survey data, so while there has been a crafts section in the former classification, we've not been able to provide GVA [gross value added] data.
"We recognise that high-end craft occupations contain a creative element, but the view is that in the main, that these roles are more concerned with the manufacturing process, rather than the creative process."
The Crafts Council report, Craft in an Age of Change (2012) found that of 23,000 contemporary craft businesses in the UK, 88% are sole-traders, many of whom fall below the VAT threshold. This makes data collection challenging. However, the same report also shows a sector that has an estimated income of £457m (larger than music downloads and only slightly smaller than West End theatres) with a GVA of £220m.
The Crafts Council continues to be involved in direct talks with DCMS but our views have not been taken on board to date. We will be formally responding to the current and seeking to propose alternatives."

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