The Cultural Renewal Taskforce panel will be led by Neil Mendoza, the architect of the 2017 Mendoza Review of Museums in England. The other members are:
- Mark Cornell, Ambassador theatre Group
- Lord Grade, former chair of the BBC and ITV
- Baroness Lane-Fox, founder of LastMinute.com
- Edward Mellors, Mellors Group Events
- Tamara Rojo, English national Ballet
- Alex Scott, sports broadcaster
- Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair, Arts Council England
Part of Mendoza’s brief will be to collaborate with Arts Council England, National Lottery Heritage Fund, Historic England and other sectoral bodies to develop and deliver a strategy fit to support organisations large and small. The culture secretary, Oliver Dowden also announced £200 million in new funding which will be made available for small charities “that are at the heart of their communities”, but without any specific detail on how much of this – if any – would be available for cultural organisations.
The Welsh and Northern Irish governments have published recovery plans where open-air museums will open before other institutions. Museums Galleries Scotland is working with the Scottish government on plans to reopen the museum sector.
Whilst this all sounds very heartening, let’s hope that it’s not too little or too late to help British culture and heritage to rebound from the damaging impacts of the coronavirus lockdown.