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Government cutting Culture, Media and Sport department

Published 9th Jun 2012

It was announced last week that the Department for Culture, Media and Sport may be closed down, after the 2012 Olympic Games are over.

The department’s current responsibilities include the Olympics, the government’s role in the Diamond Jubilee celebrations as well as the switch to digital television.

Labour’s deputy leader and culture spokesman Harriet Harman claimed the Prime Minister was poised to close down the Department for Culture, Media and Sport once the Olympic Games are over.

Though she opposed such a move, and Downing Street sources insisted it was ‘not in the offing’, economists and some Tory ministers back the idea, pointing out that the Government functioned perfectly well before 1992, when the department was created.

According to Mrs Harman, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport is ready to close after the Olympics, and has already halved in size.

The Institute of Economic Affairs has claimed that closing the department could save up to £1.6bn, which in turn could give the Government room for tax cuts.

This would also cease taxpayer subsidies for museums, libraries and art galleries, which in total account for about a third of this saving, approximately £540 million.

However Mrs Harman, deputy Labour leader, said she feared Prime Minister David Cameron "is about to deal yet another blow to the arts by abolishing the DCMS altogether".

Writing in the Evening Standard she said: "There are well-sourced rumours in Westminster and the arts world that after the Olympics, the government will announce that the DCMS is no longer needed."

And on her website on Friday, 27 April, she said the Prime Minister should offer a "categorical assurance" that he would not abolish the department, once the London Games are over.

However the government are keen to downplay these rumours, officials have said this to be “complete rumours”, with Downing Street saying that they did not recognise the rep


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