BEFS Is Providing Short Weekly Updates On COVID-19 Information Relevant For The Built Environment Sector.
Historic Environment Scotland’s survey on the needs of the heritage sector during, and beyond, the emergency period closes today. To paint as broad and accurate a picture as possible, please take the time to share your views. You can help us understand the current position and outlook as businesses, organisations and community groups within Scotland’s historic environment sector. The survey will be open until midnight tonight, Thursday 30 April.
We have updated our COVID-19 Funding Advice page, of note is the letter from the Cabinet Secretary for the Economy, Fair Work and Culture to the Culture, Tourism, Europe and External Affairs Committee. .
Ms Hyslop also responded today to our request for information on HES grant funding:
With respect to your query about HES grant funding, please be assured that I am aware of the valuable support that this money provides to the wider heritage sector and recognise the need to provide clarity on this issue as a priority.
My officials are working closely with HES to understand the specific support that the heritage sector might require beyond that which is available through existing schemes. The focus of that work is on addressing not just the immediate needs of the sector, but the longer-term support that may be required to aid recovery. The results of the survey that you have been involved with will no doubt provide important data in this regard and I know my officials will welcome your intelligence and insights.
There can be little doubt that we are only in the very early stages of a major financial challenge. The Scottish Government 2020-21 Budget funding allocated to HES was based on it generating almost 75% of its income through commercial activity. This is now impossible and the impact on the heritage sector of prolonged periods of social distancing, without international visitors to Scotland will likely be profound.
BEFS will be providing these short updates weekly when relevant information for the built environment sector becomes available, in addition to the fortnightly bulletin.