MD1603 Creative Industries Investment and Culture Strategy support

Type of decision: 
Mayoral decision
Date signed: 
24 February 2016
Decision by: 
Boris Johnson MP (past staff), Mayor of London

Executive summary

The Mayor is committed to ensuring London retains its global position as the capital for culture and creativity. To reinforce this, continued investment of £2,697,000 is requested  for 2016-17 to (i) maintain the Mayor’s investment portfolio across film, TV and animation, fashion and design, (ii) continue delivering Busk in London as agreed in principle in MD1397 and MD1501 and  (iii) continued appointment of an Administrator to provide support  for the Culture Team to deliver the Mayor’s Culture Strategy.



That the Mayor approves expenditure of up to £2.697m: 

1.    to maintain the GLA’s creative industries investment portfolio, by way of the award of grant funding to: 
a)    Film London - a contribution of up to £1.55 million towards the costs of its film international promotion programme which supports over 100 productions in the capital and its TV and animation programme which supports £140 million of new inward investment;  
b)    the British Fashion Council - a contribution of up to £0.649m towards the costs of its London Fashion Week and London Collection Men showcases for international buyers; and 
c)    the London Design Festival - a contribution of up to £0.25m towards the costs of its annual international design festival; and

2.    to enable the continuation of the delivery of the Busk in London project; and  

3.    for the appointment and engagement of a Culture Team Administrator.  


Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

1.1    The Greater London Authority plays a key role in ensuring that London remains a centre for  creativity and innovation, catalysing jobs and growth whilst also ensuring that the capital’s rich cultural offer is accessible to more Londoners. 

1.2    Due to a decade of sustained public investment and statutory strategy, culture is now one of London’s top industries. Today, 1 in 6 jobs in London are in the creative economy, and the creative digital industry has become London’s highest performing sector.

1.3    The wider 2016/17 culture programme continues to focus on strengthening London’s tourism, jobs and economic growth as well as complementing a range of other GLA priorities such as housing and planning, regeneration and education. 

1.4    Specifically, this decision will cover sub-programmes that have a proven track record of success: 

•    Each of the creative industries portfolio funded organisations (Film London; British Fashion Council and London Design Festival) provides the GLA with evidence of their economic impact. The British Fashion Council and London Design Festival figures are derived from analysis conducted by independent organisations such as Audience Agency and Com Res. Film London gathers impact data directly from the film sector to calculate the inward investment and jobs figures for films it has attracted or supported directly. Based on this evidence and previous track record, we anticipate that the investment for 2016/2017 will generate at least £125 million in new inward investment into film and 1,300 crew jobs; £140 million in new inward investment into TV and animation; £26 million of new business for 1,200 design companies; and £97 million in new fashion sales. The combined portfolio will leverage a total of £8.3 million in other private and public funding.

•    Busk In London has been successfully set up and approval is sought to continue the GLA funding. Initial funding of £0.137m to appoint a consultant, develop a website and launch Busk In London was approved by the Mayor under cover of MD1397. Further funding of £0.291m to continue the consultant, complete the website, deliver an international festival and secure partners and sponsors was approved by the Mayor under cover of MD1501. Key outputs of Busk In London are: an international street performance festival and young buskers’ competition reaching 3 million people; information, advice and increased work opportunities for 1,700 artists; a cost effective year-round busking scheme that supports local authorities and the police and is funded by BIDs and private landowners; a boost to London’s tourism and retail sectors through the animation of public spaces with quality, free entertainment. 

•    In May 2016 the Culture Team will lead the development and delivery, including consultation on the 2016-2020 Culture Strategy. For the past two years the Culture Team has employed an Administrator through the Culture Strategy budget.  This role provides cross team support for the delivery of the Culture Strategy.  The current contract runs out in March 2016 and the contract needs to be extended until March 2017 with recruitment taking place in Feb/March 2016.

1.5    The Mayor’s Investment and Performance Board meeting on 18 January 2016 endorsed the proposed Creative Industries Investment portfolio, Busk in London and Culture Strategy support programme and approved in principle the proposed expenditure set out in the report’s Budget Breakdown.


Objectives and expected outcomes


2.1    This programme of activity comprises scalable projects which have already proven a success, and have the best chance of encouraging further investment and driving up participation amongst Londoners. 

2.2     Creative Industries Investment Portfolio: 
Based on previous year’s results against target, the GLA investment in creative industries (film, TV and animation, design and fashion) is expected to deliver a total of £364m per annum, including (i) £200m in film, TV and animation spend in the capital and create 1,700 jobs (ii) £26m of new business for 1,200 design SMEs, (iii) £41m to the wider London economy as a result of the London Design Festival, (iv) £97m of new business through London Fashion Week and London Collections: Men. IPB has agreed in-principle, subject to Mayoral approval, to the award further funding for Film London to continue its work in TV and animation which was previously funded from Growing Places Funded. GLA’s investment of £0.25m is expected to deliver £140 million in new inward investment into TV and animation and create 1,500 jobs. 

2.3    Busk in London
Busk in London will deliver: (i) a network of 100 busking pitches with a combined footfall of 1 million people per week; (ii) support, information, advice and job opportunities for 2,000 street performers; (iii) a Busk In London Street Team; (iv) a public audience for the Busk In London Festival of 3 million; (v)  talent development for 150 young performers aged 11-25; (vi) International Busking Day* in 30 cities across the UK and abroad; (vii) volunteering opportunities for 20 Team London volunteers; (iv) leverage approx. £0.3m in funding and in-kind support from 12 partners and sponsors.

*International Busking Day incurs a small cost of around £2,000 to the GLA. Partner cities take full responsibility for delivering their own activity at their own expense. This activity brings significant benefits to London by raising the city’s profile as world cultural leader, promoting London as a vibrant tourism destination to people across the UK and around the world, and forging strong cultural links with other cities, helping London to learn from best practice and benefit from income talent from other cities. International Busking Day also increases the opportunities for London to benefit from commercial sponsorship of Busk In London, thus ensuring that cost to London tax payers is reduced over time.

2. 4     Culture Strategy 
The continued appointment of the Culture Team Administrator will support coordination of wider team and resources in delivering remaining policy actions of the current Culture Strategy.  It will also help with the work being done to deliver a new Culture Strategy 2016-20 and existing and emerging projects.
Londoners will be the primary beneficiaries of this investment in three ways:
•    as direct participants - (e.g. 2,000 street performers, 1,700 job opportunities in film, TV and animation)
•    as audiences (e.g. 3million people see the Busk In London Festival, 330,000 visitors to the London Design Festival)
•    as businesses (e.g. 1,700 film and TV crew supported, 1,200 design SMEs, £97m for fashion businesses, increased tourism spend across retail and hospitality sector)


Equality comments

3.1    The Creative Industries, Culture Strategy and Busk in London investment programmes aim to widen access to arts and cultural activity to all Londoners. Under the strategy sub headings Widening the reach and Education, skills and careers opportunities such as creative apprenticeships, supporting international talent and Busk in London Festival provides free entertainment for 3 million people and seeks to directly engage with young people and provide opportunities to participate and take up careers in a difficult to navigate sector. In terms of the creative industries investment and cultural tourism programmes the aim of the promotion of London as a place to work and visit is expected to bring wide ranging benefits of jobs, growth and international profile to all Londoners interested. 


Other considerations

4.1    Key risks are set out in detail in the Stage 1 & 2 concept papers for the IPB and are (i) Creative Industries Projects fail to leverage investment, (ii) Busk in London fails to raise external income, (iii) failure to deliver an ambitious culture strategy that addresses the needs of London’s creative and culture sector.

4.2    Mitigations to these risks include:
The organisations in the Creative Industries Portfolio programme all have strong track records of leveraging external investment with a high level of returning sponsors for these projects. Each organisation has dedicated staff resources to income raising backed by a commercial sponsorship strategy:

•    Film London leverage £1.5m, of which £0.275m is from the private sector.
•    British Fashion Council leverages £6.3m in investment from public and private sources.
•    London Design Festival leverages £0.5m of which £0.368m is from the private sector.

•    The Culture Team have a strong record of raising income for Busk in London – £0.21m has been raised in sales and sponsorship (85% from private sector)

•    The Culture Team are already engaged in the GLA wide statutory strategy coordination group to ensure that the next Mayoral strategy will be delivered effectively and appropriate consultation will take place.

4.3    The GLA Act (1999) legislates that the Mayor will publish and deliver a Cultural Strategy for London.
The proposed activity will support key priorities of the updated culture strategy: (i) Maintain London’s position as a world capital of culture, (ii) widening the reach to excellence, (iii) Education, skills and careers, (iv) Infrastructure, environment and the public realm

4.4    The Cultural Strategy, Creative Industries Investment portfolio and Busk in London programme promote economic development and wealth creation, social development and tourism throughout London.


Financial comments

5.1     Approval is being sought for expenditure of £2.697m from the GLA for the continuance of the Mayor’s Creative Industries Investment Programme, details as per the table below:


Funding Request 16/17


GLA Funding 16/17



Creative Industries - Film




Creative Industries - Design




Creative Industries - Fashion




Busk in London



Reprofiling GIGS funding budgeted across 16/17, 17/18 and 18/19

Culture Team Administrator



Part of Cultural Consortium budget (£0.121m)






5.2    The £2.449m funding request for the Creative Industries (Film, Design and Fashion) exists within the GLA budget in 2016/17. 

5.3    It is proposed that the budget of £0.125m in Rhythm of London be renamed ‘Busk in London’ and that £0.015m be brought forward from 2017/18 and £0.07m from 2018/19 to meet the shortfall in 2016/17.

5.4    The salary costs for the Culture Team Administrator (£0.038m) will be funded from within the London Cultural Consortium 2016/17 budget of £0.121m.


Investment and Performance Board

IPB considered the proposals for funding the Creative Industries Portfolio, Busk in London and the Culture Administration post and approved £2.697m on 18 January 2016.



Planned delivery approach and next steps


Milestones, deliverables and promotional activity


GLA lead

Planned date


MD approved


January 2016


Creative industries grant agreements for film, TV and animation, fashion and design signed, with appropriate break clauses


Feb/March 2016


Recruit and appoint Culture Team Administrator


Feb/Mar 2016


Appoint Busk In London operator (end of OJEU process)

Finalise sponsorship negotiations and partnership contracts


Feb/Mar 2016


Busk In London expands network of busking pitches, increases brand visibility and announces Busk In London Festival 2016


April 2016


London Collections: Men


June 2016


Busk In London Festival 2016 / International Busking Day.

Pilot digital tipping


Jul / Aug / Sep 2016


London Fashion Week; London Film Festival, London Design Festival


September 2016


London Collections: Men


Jan 2017


London Fashion Week


Feb 2017