Acceptance in lieu collects objects worth £215m over decade

by Calum Fuller

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09 Nov 2012

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A REPORT released by the Arts Council for 2010/12 reveals that more than £215m of rare and culturally important artefacts have been collected over the past decade.

The publication, which details 51 cases of major cultural significance collected and allocated to nation's museums, also shows that a total of £8.3m in cultural objects were collected in 2010/11, while 2011/12 brought in relics worth £31.3m. The acceptance of those objects settled £24,950,413 worth of tax.

The acceptance in lieu scheme was brought in by then-prime minister David Lloyd George in 1910 as part of the People's Budget. It is administered by the Arts Council England's exports, loans and collections unit, which awards accreditation and designation to museums and collections, and recommends which vital works of art and items of cultural significance should remain in the country, advising on the acceptance and allocation of cultural objects in lieu of inheritance tax.

Since its inception, acceptance in lieu has seen thousands of important and significant items have been allocated to museums, archives and galleries across the UK – including Picasso's Weeping Woman – and can now be accessed and enjoyed by the general public.

Arts Council chair Liz Forgan said: "The range and quality of objects donated during the two years covered by this report is as impressive as ever; from masterpieces of European painting by Rubens and Turner, and the Capel Garman Firedog created in Wales two millennia ago, through to the artistic achievements of the last few decades represented in three exceptional paintings by Keith Vaughan whose centenary is being celebrated this year.

"Philanthropy has always played an important part in contributing to this country's cultural heritage. We want to encourage more people to donate through the AIL scheme so that our nation's public collections are further enriched for the benefit of audiences throughout the country."

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