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Creative Scotland under pressure to reform

Pressure from the Scottish arts world is growing on the board of the crisis-hit funding body Creative Scotland to make fundamental internal reforms.

Artists hope a board meeting in Pitlochry will lead to the end of a year-long controversy over funding and arts policy, leading to the resignation of Andrew Dixon on Monday.

It is understood the report not only sums up the many criticisms of the body from the arts world, but suggests changes to its internal workings, its funding processes, how it communicates with the artistic community and its structure.

The spotlight will fall on the remaining senior staff of Creative Scotland – Venu Dhupa, Iain Munro and Caroline Parkinson.

Yesterday, Scottish singer Karine Polwart said the "mechanistic business language" used by Creative Scotland had to change.

Writer Janice Galloway added: "More artist input built into the doings and daily life of Creative Scotland is more than desirable. Everyone wants the reassurance that any fresh administration grasps that culture – history, philosophy, language and the arts together – are bedrock, not a frill."

Mr Dixon will leave in January with a £60,000 exit package following criticism of the quango which distributes £80 million in Government and lottery funds.

His resignation came two months after a devastating letter now signed by 400 of the nation's artists, writers, playwrights, musicians and composers, which criticised the body's policies.

Artists and practitioners in Dumfries and Galloway gave their support to the body. An open letter said many backed the "overall momentum of change" in the organisation.

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