UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has announced the creation of a more streamlined Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the appointment of an eighth Culture Secretary in five years.
Following a Cabinet reshuffle, Lucy Frazer takes over the restructured DCMS department, which no longer has responsibility for digital due to the creation of a Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT).
Frazer was previously Minister of State in the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities from October 2022 to February 2023. She also spent time as Minister of State at the Department for Transport and Financial Secretary to the Treasury.
According to a Government spokesperson: “The Department for Culture, Media and Sport will focus on supporting culture, arts, media, sport and civil society across every part of England – recognising the UK’s world-leading position in these areas and the importance of these sectors in contributing so much to our economy, way of life and our reputation around the world.
“The department will champion sport for all at every level, support our world-leading cultural and creative industries and enhance the cohesiveness of our communities.”
Claire Walker and Hannah Essex, co-CEOs of SOLT and UK Theatre, said the refocusing of the department is a positive step and called on the new Culture Secretary to ensure the higher rate of Theatre Tax relief is retained at the March Budget.
They said: “This must be followed up by working with the theatre sector to develop a strong UK talent pipeline through investment in the arts premium and the development of the cultural education plan.
“We look forward to working with the new Secretary of State and department to promote, sustain and grow the UK theatre sector at home and internationally.”
Meanwhile, Sacha Lord, the Night Time Economy Adviser for Greater Manchester, said: “I welcome the appointment of the new Culture Secretary, Lucy Frazer, today. The sector has experienced the toughest years in its history and with this move I hope the support it is given starts to reflect its importance to economic growth.”