Issues guide: Tourism and culture

Holyrood is responsible for funding culture and the arts, mainly through the agency Creative Scotland.

Science policy is reserved to Westminster, except where it relates directly to educational establishments - oversight of schools and universities is devolved. The Scottish government sets policy on sports administration independently of Westminster, for instance overseeing the successful bid to host the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

Here, BBC news online Scotland outlines the tourism and culture policies of the SNP, Scottish Labour, the Scottish Conservatives, the Scottish Liberal Democrats and the Scottish Greens outline.

Election issues 2011

Tourism and culture

Scottish National Party



Liberal Democrats


  • New national strategy for museum and gallery sector, including the establishment of a National Development Body.
  • Direct government funding for Scottish Mining Museum, Scottish Maritime Museum, and Scottish Fisheries Museum
  • Establish a National Book Week from 2012
  • Tourism key part of overseas engagement strategy.
  • Deliver second year of Homecoming, in 2014.
  • Make VisitScotland lead tourism development agency and cut duplication with Scottish Enterprise.
  • VisitScotland and EventScotland to deliver "See More of Scotland" campaign for visitors to events like the Commonwealth Games.
  • New "Scottish Film Champion".
  • Modernise library services to expand the provision of superfast broadband and e-book lending.
  • Protect free admission to galleries and museums.
  • Preserve free entry to national museums and galleries.
  • Establish private sector group on tourism to deliver a "wholesale rationalisation" of sector.
  • Look into possible tourism investment bank, based on the Austrian model.
  • Retain tourist information centres, but encourage premises-sharing with other organisations.
  • Place obligation on heritage body Historic Scotland to promote tourism.
  • Establish new a creative industry fund.
  • Maintain free access to Scotland's national museums.
  • Support 2014 as a second year of homecoming for those people around the world with Scottish ancestry.
  • Promote Scotland and help tourism and exports by replacing VisitScotland and Scottish Development International with a new body - Scottish International.
  • Explore new ways to make international business connections by looking at further steps to build on the success of the Air Route Development programme.
  • Reduce focus on overseas tourism in favour of UK domestic tourism.
  • Improve opportunities for local community broadcasting, and continue to press the UK Government for greater powers over broadcasting
  • Ensure access to diverse, innovative artistic and cultural experiences is protected and promoted.
  • Oppose the closure of community sports and leisure facilities
  • Ensure library services are protected from unnecessary cuts.

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