Pwyllgor Diwylliant, y Gymraeg a Chyfathrebu - Y Bumed Senedd

Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee - Fifth Senedd

11/03/2021

Aelodau'r Pwyllgor a oedd yn bresennol

Committee Members in Attendance

Bethan Sayed MS Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor
Committee Chair
Carwyn Jones MS
David Melding MS
Helen Mary Jones MS
John Griffiths MS
Mick Antoniw MS

Y rhai eraill a oedd yn bresennol

Others in Attendance

Dafydd Elis-Thomas AM Y Dirprwy Weinidog Diwylliant, Chwaraeon a Thwristiaeth
Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism
Gerwyn Evans Llywodraeth Cymru
Welsh Government
Jason Thomas Llywodraeth Cymru
Welsh Government
Steffan Roberts Llywodraeth Cymru
Welsh Government

Swyddogion y Senedd a oedd yn bresennol

Senedd Officials in Attendance

Angharad Roche Dirprwy Glerc
Deputy Clerk
Martha Da Gama Howells Ail Glerc
Second Clerk
Robin Wilkinson Ymchwilydd
Researcher
Rhys Morgan Clerc
Clerk

Cofnodir y trafodion yn yr iaith y llefarwyd hwy ynddi yn y pwyllgor. Yn ogystal, cynhwysir trawsgrifiad o’r cyfieithu ar y pryd. Lle mae cyfranwyr wedi darparu cywiriadau i’w tystiolaeth, nodir y rheini yn y trawsgrifiad.

The proceedings are reported in the language in which they were spoken in the committee. In addition, a transcription of the simultaneous interpretation is included. Where contributors have supplied corrections to their evidence, these are noted in the transcript.

Cyfarfu'r pwyllgor drwy gynhadledd fideo.

Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 09:52.

The committee met by video-conference.

The meeting began at 09:52. 

1. Cyflwyniad, ymddiheuriadau, dirprwyon a datgan buddiannau
1. Introductions, apologies, substitutions and declarations of interest

Diolch, a chroeso i'r Pwyllgor Diwylliant, y Gymraeg a Chyfathrebu'r bore yma. Eitem 1 ar yr agenda yw cyflwyniad, ymddiheuriadau, dirprwyon a datgan buddiannau. Croeso i'r Aelodau am ymuno gyda ni y bore yma. Oes gan unrhyw un rywbeth i'w ddatgan yma y bore yma? Mick. 

Good morning, and welcome to this meeting of the Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee. Item 1 on the agenda is introductions, apologies, substitutions and declarations of interest. A warm welcome to Members. Does anyone have any declaration of interest this morning? Mick.

2. Craffu ar waith y Dirprwy Weinidog Diwylliant, Chwaraeon a Thwristiaeth
2. Scrutiny of the Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism

Felly, symud ymlaen at eitem 2, a chraffu ar waith y Dirprwy Weinidog Diwylliant, Chwaraeon a Thwristiaeth. Y tystion y bore yma yw Dafydd Elis-Thomas, y Dirprwy Weinidog Diwylliant, Chwaraeon a Thwristiaeth; Jason Thomas, cyfarwyddwr diwylliant, chwaraeon a thwristiaeth; Steffan Roberts, dirprwy gyfarwyddwr, diwylliant a chwaraeon; a hefyd Gerwyn Evans, dirprwy gyfarwyddwr, Cymru Creadigol. Croeso i chi oll am ddod atom heddiw. Ar gyfer y record, a fyddai'n iawn i chi gyflwyno eich hunain? Diolch yn fawr iawn.

We'll move on, then, to item 2, scrutiny of the Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism. The witnesses this morning are Dafydd Elis-Thomas, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism; Jason Thomas, director, culture, sport and tourism; Steffan Roberts, deputy director, culture and sport; and also Gerwyn Evans, deputy director, Creative Wales. A very warm welcome to you all. Thank you for joining us. Could you just introduce yourselves for the record? Thank you. 

Diolch yn fawr, Gadeirydd. Mae'n bleser dod yn ôl i'r pwyllgor unwaith eto, a gobeithio y gallwn ni wneud cyfiawnder â'r cwestiynau yn ein hatebion.

Thank you very much, Chair. It's a pleasure to return to the committee once again, and I hope we can do justice to your questions this morning. 

Bore da, bawb. I'm Jason Thomas. I'm director of culture, sport and tourism.

Bore da. Steffan Roberts, dirprwy gyfarwyddwr diwylliant a chwaraeon.

Good morning. Steffan Roberts, deputy director, culture and sport. 

Diolch. A dyma Gerwyn Evans. Gwnaethon ni golli chi am eiliad fanna, Gerwyn. Dim ond gofyn i chi gyflwyno eich hun ar gyfer y record. 

We lost you for just a moment there, Gerwyn. If I could just ask you to introduce yourself for the record. 

Bore da, good morning, everybody. Gerwyn Evans, deputy director, Creative Wales. 

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Wel, mae nifer ohonoch chi wedi hen arfer nawr gyda phrosesau'r pwyllgor yma. Felly, dŷn ni'n mynd i fynd yn syth at gwestiynau, os yw hynny'n iawn gyda chi, a fi sydd gyda'r cwestiynau cyntaf, ynglŷn â chymorth coronafeirws ac ail-gychwyn y gweithgareddau. Felly, jest cwestiwn ynglŷn â faint o gyllid canlyniadol gaiff Llywodraeth Cymru yn dilyn cyhoeddiad diweddar £300 miliwn Llywodraeth y Deyrnas Unedig i helpu'r sector diwylliant yn Lloegr i reoli effaith y pandemig. Faint o'r cyllid canlyniadol ydych chi'n mynd i gael yn rhan o'r gyllideb dŷch chi'n ei harwain, Gweinidog?

Thank you very much. You're well used to the processes of this committee by now, so we will move immediately to questions, if that's okay with you. I have the first set of questions on coronavirus support and restarting activity. So, just a first question on how much consequential funding the Welsh Government will receive following the recent announcement made by the UK Government of £300 million to help the culture sector in England to manage the impact of the pandemic. So, how much consequential funding do you expect to receive for the budget that you're responsible for, Minister?

Wel, mae'n ddrwg gen i ddweud y bydd yn rhaid i fi ateb nad ydyn ni eto yn gwybod yn bendant. Ond, cyn i fi fynd ymhellach ar hynna, mi wnaethon ni gyfnewid gohebiaeth yn gynharach, ac mi ges i gyfle i ateb eich llythyr chi o 29 Ionawr, ac mae yna lythyr llawnach gennym ni ar 4 Mawrth. Dwi'n hapus iawn ac mae swyddogion yn hapus i wneud yr un peth eto, os ydych chi am ragor o wybodaeth ar ôl y drafodaeth yma. 

Ond y sefyllfa ydy bod gyda ni swm tybiedig—swm rydym ni'n gobeithio amdano, fel petai—o £24 miliwn o gyllid canlyniadol, ond mae'r trafodaethau yn parhau. Rydym ni wedi derbyn negeseuon oddi wrth Lywodraeth y Deyrnas Unedig, ond, wrth gwrs, yn ôl y ffordd mae hyn yn gweithio, dydy'r cyllid canlyniadol ddim o angenrheidrwydd yn mynd i'r un adran bolisi weithredol ag y mae ei ffynhonnell o. Beth dwi'n ei ddweud ydy dydy'r ffaith bod yna swm penodol yn cael ei gyhoeddi ar gyfer Lloegr—£1.7 biliwn yn 2020-21 wedi cael ei gyfeirio ar gyfer diwylliant a'r celfyddydau a sefydliadau treftadaeth gan Lywodraeth y Deyrnas Unedig, a gwariant ychwanegol o £300 miliwn ar gyfer 2021-22. Dyna'r ffigwr sydd yn ein arwain ni i obeithio y £24 miliwn. Ond Cabinet Llywodraeth Cymru, wrth gwrs, fydd yn penderfynu sut mae'r cyllid yna yn cael ei wario, ac mae hynny yn dibynnu ar y sefyllfa cyn yr etholiad—does dim llawer o amser—ond ar ôl yr etholiad hefyd, ble bynnag y byddwn ni ar ôl hynny, Bethan. 

Well, I'm sorry to say that I will have to answer by saying that we don't yet know for certain. But before I go any further on that, we exchanged correspondence earlier, and I had an opportunity to respond to your letter of 29 January, and there's also a fuller letter from us on 4 March. If you do want further information I'm happy to provide that via correspondence following this discussion.

But the situation is that we have an amount that we are hoping to receive of £24 million in consequential funding, but negotiations are ongoing. We've received messages from the UK Government, but given the way this works, the consequential funding isn't necessarily provided to the same policy department. What I'm saying is that the fact that a specific sum has been announced for England, which is £1.7 billion for 2020-21—that's been provided for culture, the arts and heritage organisations by the UK Government, as well as additional spending of £300 million for 2021-22. That's the figure that leads us to hope for that £24 million that I mentioned. But it's the Welsh Government Cabinet that will decide how that funding is spent, and that will depend on the situation before the election—there isn't much time, of course—but also after the election, wherever we are at that point, Bethan. 

09:55

Ie, yn sicr. Jest, felly, i gadarnhau, rydych chi'n ymwybodol bod yr arian hwnnw yn dod i Gymru ond dydych chi ddim eto'n siŵr faint o'r dyraniad fydd yn dod i'r cronfa adferiad diwylliannol. 

Yes, certainly. So, just to confirm, you're aware that that funding is to be provided to Wales but you're not sure how much of the allocation will be provided to your cultural recovery fund. 

Na. Ond dwi ddim yn credu ei fod o ar ein llyfrau ni fel Llywodraeth eto; dwi ddim yn siŵr os ydy'r cyllid wedi cael ei ddatgelu yn glir. Ond efallai byddai Jason yn fodlon ychwanegu rhywbeth—

No. I don't think it's on our books as a Government as of yet; I'm not sure if the funding has been clearly announced. But perhaps Jason— 

Dwi'n meddwl bod Steffan eisiau siarad. 

I think Steffan wants to come in. 

Bore da. Jest i ychwanegu at hynny, mae'n werth nodi, Gadeirydd, bod y Gweinidog cyllid wedi ysgrifennu at Gadeirydd y Pwyllgor Cyllid yn ddiweddar o ran yr arian ychwanegol sydd wedi dod yn uniongyrchol o gyllideb Prydain yn ddiweddar. Mae yna £735 miliwn yn rhan o'r arian ychwanegol. Dyw'r arian ychwanegol ar gyfer y cyhoeddiad yma, y £300 miliwn, ddim yn dangos yn y cyfrif yna ar hyn o bryd, ond mae'n rhywbeth y byddem ni'n disgwyl i Lywodraeth Prydain gadarnhau yn ystod y flwyddyn fel rhan o'r main estimates maen nhw'n eu gwneud, neu'r supplementary estimates yn ystod y flwyddyn. Felly, yn dechnegol, dyw e ddim ar y llyfrau gyda ni ar hyn o bryd fel rhan o'r arian ychwanegol ddaeth drwyddo yn y gyllideb ar ddechrau'r mis. 

Good morning. If I could just add to that, it's worth noting, Chair, that the Minister for finance has written to the Chair of the Finance Committee recently in terms of the additional funds that have been provided directly via the UK budget recently. There is £735 million there. The additional funding, the £300 million that was mentioned, doesn't appear in those figures at the moment, but it's something that we would expect the UK Government to confirm during the year as part of their main estimates or supplementary estimates during the year. So, technically, it's not on the books at the moment as part of the additional funding that came through via the budget at the beginning of the month. 

Rydych chi'n dweud 'yn ystod y flwyddyn'. Dyna'r cyfan rydych chi'n ei wybod—dydych chi ddim yn gwybod pryd yn ystod y flwyddyn fydd hyn yn digwydd. 

You say 'during the year'. That's all you know, is it? You don't when this will happen. 

Mi fyddwn i'n tybio tua mis Mai. Dyna pryd mae'r estimates yn dod trwyddo o'r Trysorlys. Ond does dim dyddiad pendant ar hynny. Felly, rydym ni'n gweithio ar sail beth sydd wedi cael ei gyhoeddi, ac felly rydym ni'n disgwyl mai £24 miliwn yw'r ffigwr yna. 

Un pwynt arall jest i'w nodi'n gyflym. Rydym ni'n tybio hefyd fod yr arian ychwanegol ar gyfer chwarter cyntaf y flwyddyn, achos mae hwnna yn unol â'r road map neu'r trywydd mae Llywodraeth Prydain wedi'i osod ar gyfer ailagor y sectorau. Felly, mae hwnna'n rhoi rhyw syniad bod y cyllid yn dilyn y map sydd gyda nhw allan o'r lockdown presennol. 

I would assume that it would be around May. That's when the estimates tend to come through from the Treasuryb. But we have no set dates. So, we are working on the basis of what's been announced, but we expect it to be a figure of £24 million.

Just one further point to note quickly. We also assume that the additional funding is for the first quarter of the year, because that would accord with the road map set out by the UK Government on reopening sectors. So, that gives us some idea that the funding follows the road map that they have set out in terms of coming out of the current lockdown. 

Ac wedyn, os bydd gan Lywodraeth Cymru lwybr gwahanol neu os bydd yn dilyn trywydd gwahanol, bydd yr arian yn dod oherwydd llwybr Lloegr, ac felly mae hi lan i chi wedyn sut ydych chi yn penderfynu defnyddio'r arian hwnnw, mae'n siŵr. 

And then, if the UK Government takes a different route, the funding would be provided due to decisions made in England, and it would be up to you then as to how you decide to use that funding, I assume. 

Wel, jest cadarnhau hynny. [Chwerthin.] Dwi eisiau gwneud yn siŵr bod hynny yn mynd i ddigwydd, Weinidog. 

Well, I was just confirming that. [Laughter.] I just wanted to make sure that that was the case, Minister. 

Jason, did you want to come in? I see you looking as if you do. 

Thanks, Chair. Steffan covered the point that I was going to raise about the first quarter coverage. Thank you. Diolch. 

10:00

Ocê. Grêt. Diolch yn fawr iawn am hynny. Gwnaf i symud ymlaen at fwy o gwestiynau ar y mater yma gan Carwyn Jones. Diolch, Carwyn.

Okay. Great. Thank you very much for that. I'll move on to further questions on the same issue from Carwyn Jones. Thank you, Carwyn.

Diolch, Gadeirydd, a bore da, Weinidog. Ambell i gwestiwn ynglŷn â chymorth coronafeirws ac ailgychwyn gweithgareddau. Yn gyntaf, a allaf i ofyn cwestiwn ynglŷn â lefel rhybudd 1? Ydy hynny'n caniatáu perfformiadau artistig gyda chynulleidfaoedd?

Thank you, Chair, and good morning, Minister. I have a few questions on coronavirus support and restarting activity. First of all, could I ask a question on alert level 1? Does that allow for any artistic performances with audiences?

Ydy, mewn egwyddor, ond wrth gwrs does dim byd felly wedi digwydd eto, ac mi fydd yn rhaid i neuaddau cyngerdd a theatrau ddilyn yn ofalus beth sydd yng nghynllun rheoli'r Llywodraeth ac, wrth gwrs, yn y cyfarwyddiadau a'r canllawiau sydd wedi cael eu darparu. Ond mae'r rhain wedi cael eu hysgrifennu ar y cyd gyda'r sefydliadau ac yn arbennig gyda chyngor y celfyddydau, canolfan y mileniwm ac yn y blaen.

Yes, in principle, it does, but of course nothing of that kind has happened as of yet, and concert halls and theatres will have to carefully follow what's contained within the Welsh Government's management plan and also in the directions and guidance provided. But these have been drawn up jointly with the institutions, particularly the arts council, the millennium centre and so on.

Oes yna unrhyw syniad ar hyn o bryd beth fyddai'r amodau yn edrych fel ynglŷn â beth fydden nhw'n gorfod ei wneud? A jest un cwestiwn sydd yn dilyn o hynny: oes yna fwy o risg ynglŷn â chreu perfformiadau byw, i gymharu â mynd i'r sinema, efallai, neu'r dafarn? Ydy'r asesiad yn wahanol, efallai, i fynd i ryw berfformiad byw yn y theatr?

Do you have any idea at the moment what the conditions would be like in terms of what they would need to do? And just one question following on from that: is there greater risk in terms of staging live performances as compared to going to the cinema or the pub? Is the assessment different to attend a live theatre performance, for example?

Wel, ydy, mae o, mae'n debyg. Rydyn ni'n dibynnu'n llwyr ar yr arweiniad iechyd cyhoeddus yn yr achos yma, ac mae Iechyd Cyhoeddus Cymru ac, wrth gwrs, prif swyddog meddygol y Llywodraeth, Dr Frank Atherton, wedi bod yn rhan o'r trafodaethau yma i gyd. Yr hyn sydd wedi cael ei ddweud wrthyf i—ac wrth gwrs, dydw i ddim yn wyddonydd o gwbl—ydy bod gweithgaredd corfforol mewn perfformio, gan gynnwys y gwaith lleisiol, yn gallu bod yn fwy peryglus o ran haint nag ydy, ddywedwn ni—wel, yn amlwg—delweddau ar sgrin sinematig. Dyna ydy'r cefndir iechyd cyhoeddus i'r consérn sydd wedi bod.

Well, yes, it would appear so. We're entirely reliant on public health guidance in this scenario, and Public Health Wales and the chief medical officer, Dr Frank Atherton, have been involved in all of these negotiations and discussions. What I've been told—and of course I'm no scientist of any kind—is that live performance activity, including vocal performance, can be more dangerous or risky in terms of infection transmission than cinema screen images would be. That's the background in terms of public health to the concern that exists.

A gaf i ofyn hefyd ynglŷn â gweithgareddau'r haf? Rydyn ni wedi gweld, wrth gwrs, yn Lloegr, fod yna sôn wedi bod am gynnal gwyliau mawr, efallai yn optimistaidd iawn. Oes yna unrhyw drafodaethau wedi bod gyda rhai o'r cyrff sydd yn cynnal digwyddiadau i ddechrau siarad â nhw ynglŷn â beth fydden nhw yn gorfod gwneud pe bai pethau yn gwella yn yr haf?

Can I also ask about summer activities? We've seen in England that there's been talk of staging major festivals, perhaps optimistically. Have there been any discussions with some of those organisations that stage these kinds of events in order to start to talk to them about what they would need to do if things were to improve over the summer?

Does dim bwriad yng Nghymru i agor digwyddiadau mawr yn yr haf. Dwi'n cael trafodaethau wythnosol ac mae swyddogion yn cael trafodaethau yn amlach na hynny gyda'r sector digwyddiadau, ac rydyn ni wedi bod yn rhannu popeth y gallwn ni, a rydyn ni'n deall eu gofidiau nhw. Ond, o'r dechrau un, dwi wedi bod yn gyndyn iawn i sôn am ddyddiadau penodol, oherwydd does dim byd gwaeth—. Roeddwn i'n meddwl amdanat ti, os caf i ddweud—neu 'amdanoch chi' ddylwn i ddweud yn gyhoeddus—a'r cyfnod yn ystod clwy'r traed a'r genau. Hynny yw, doedden ni ddim yn gwybod ble byddai'r pla yn mynd, ac i ba raddau y byddai fe'n dod nôl. Rydyn ni'n dal yn yr un sefyllfa, a'r rheswm pam nad ydym ni ddim yn awyddus i ymrwymo i ddyddiadau—a mater iddyn nhw yw beth maen nhw'n dewis ei wneud yn Lloegr, er bod yna effeithiau, yn enwedig, ar ardaloedd y mers ac ardaloedd y gororau oherwydd beth sy'n digwydd yn Lloegr, yn amlwg—ond y bwriad ydy na fyddwn ni'n annog agor unrhyw beth mawr heblaw bod y sefyllfa iechyd cyhoeddus wedi gwella yn sylweddol fwy nag y mae hyd yn oed ar hyn o bryd, er bod pethau i weld yn gwella. Dyna'r agwedd ofalus mae'r Llywodraeth, fel y gwyddost ti, wedi'i chymryd.

There is no intention in Wales to open large-scale events over the summer months. I have weekly discussions and officers have discussions even more often with the events sector, and we've been sharing everything we can with them, and we understand their concerns, of course. But from the very outset, I have been reluctant to give specific dates, because there's nothing worse—. I was thinking about you, if I may say so, and about your time during foot and mouth disease. That is to say, we didn't know how the disease would develop and to what extent it would return. We are still in the same situation, and the reason why we're not eager to commit to dates—and it's a matter for England as to what they decide to do in England, although there are impacts of course in the border regions as a result of what happens in England, clearly—but our intention is that we will not encourage staging large-scale events unless the public health situation is substantially improved in relation to even what the situation is now, although things do appear to be improving. That is the careful, cautious approach adopted by the Government, as you know.

Thanks, Chair. Just to come back in on that point as well, we do have a really extensive dialogue with the events industry. We work with them very closely, and of all the sectors that we support, for them, things are probably the most uncertain. They were obviously one of the first sub-sectors to be hit by all of this and are likely to be one of the last fully out, so to speak. One thing that it's important to note is that, in the control plan, at alert level 2, we have provision for pilot/test events in there. So, that will give us an evidence base with which to decide then how far we can go as we move, hopefully, into the rest of the summer. 

The other point that I would make would be that, clearly, England has set out a different approach to events. We need to look at what they are doing there and assess the impact of that as well. We need to take in a wide range of an evidence base with which to inform our decisions. So, there's a lot of work to do over the coming weeks and months, but I think that it is right to say that we do work closely with the sector, and we did go further than England in terms of our cultural recovery fund. We supported the events industry through that. That didn't happen across the border.   

10:05

Okay. Thank you. 

Dwi'n meddwl bod Steffan Roberts eisiau dweud rhywbeth hefyd.

I think that Steffan Roberts had a contribution too.

Na, mae hynny'n iawn. Diolch, Gadeirydd. Roeddwn i'n mynd i wneud y pwynt am y digwyddiadau prawf, a'r ymgysylltu rŷn ni yn ei wneud ar draws y sector yn rheolaidd gyda grŵp theatrau, grŵp digwyddiadau a grŵp chwaraeon hefyd. Mae'r Dirprwy Weinidog yn rhan o'r trafodaethau hynny yn gyson iawn.

No, that's fine. Thanks, Chair. I was going to make that same point on the pilot and test events and the engagement across the sector, with the theatres group, the events group, and the sports group. The Deputy Minister is part of those discussions on a regular basis.

Diolch, Gadeirydd. Nawr, rwyt tithau a minnau yn gadael y Senedd, wrth gwrs, cyn bo hir, Weinidog. Roeddech chi'n sôn am glwy'r traed a'r genau. Wrth weld rhai o'r clipiau newyddion o'r amser hynny, roeddwn i'n gweld bachgen wedi troi'n ddyn llwydfarfog. Dyna'r canlyniadau rŷch chi'n eu gweld. Ond, y cwestiwn diwethaf sydd gen i yw hwn: mae'r pandemig wedi effeithio ar bopeth rŷn ni'n ceisio ei wneud, wrth gwrs, ond beth ŷch chi wedi ffaelu ei wneud yn y flwyddyn ddiwethaf o achos y pandemig?

Thank you, Chair. Now, both you and I are to leave the Senedd before too very long, Minister. You mentioned foot and mouth disease a few moments ago. In seeing some of the news clips from that time, I saw a young boy who had turned into a bearded, white-haired man. But, the final question I have is this: the pandemic has had an impact on everything that we try and do, of course, but what have you not been able to deliver in your final year in post as a result of the pandemic? 

Wel, mewn gwirionedd, cael ein gorfodi i wneud pethau yn wahanol, a chael ein gorfodi i ymgysylltu mwy, ac yn fwy cyson, gyda'r cyhoedd a gyda'r sefydliadau. Wrth gwrs, mae'r cyfrwng yma yr ydym ni arno fo ar hyn o bryd, Zoom, wedi bod yn allweddol yn hynny i gyd. Oherwydd fy mod i bach yn hŷn na chi, syr, ac yn wir yn ymddeol ar ddiwedd y tymor yma, dwi wedi gorfod—fel mae dau aelod arall o'r Llywodraeth—gweithio o adref a ddim yn gallu mynd i unman. Mae hynny wedi golygu, dwi'n teimlo, fod gen i fwy o ffocws ar beth sy'n mynd ymlaen yn y sector, oherwydd ein bod ni wedi bod yn cynnal y cyfarfodydd yma. 

Mae'r pethau o bwys, fel trafodaethau ynglŷn â datblygiadau newydd efallai y down ni i'w trafod nhw nes ymlaen y bore yma, ynglŷn â'r amgueddfa bêl-droed a'r amgueddfa gelf gyfoes a datblygiadau Theatr Clwyd—mae'r pethau yma, i'r graddau y maen nhw wedi gallu cael eu datblygu yn ystod y cyfnod yma, fel bod y cynlluniau mewn llaw—. Mae'r sefydliadau yma yn barod i fynd, pan fydd hynny'n bosib. Felly, ffocysu'r gwaith gweinidogol a gwaith swyddogion yn fwy ar ymgysylltu a thrafod.

Yr enghraifft orau, efallai, ydy'r ochr twristiaeth. Dwi'n meddwl ein bod ni wedi cael 40 o gyfarfodydd, bron yn wythnosol—cawsom ni y diwethaf ohonynt ddoe, fel mae'n digwydd—efo cynrychiolaeth o'r sector digwyddiadau a'r sector twristiaeth ar draws Cymru, sy'n golygu bod y sawl sy'n gweithio yn y maes, a'r busnesion yn y maes, a'r sefydliadau yn y maes yn gwybod yn union beth yw meddwl y Llywodraeth ar unrhyw adeg.    

Well, in reality, we have been forced to work differently and we have been forced to engage more, and more regularly, with the public and with the institutions. Of course, this medium that we are currently using, Zoom, has been key to all of that. Because I am a little older than yourself, sir, and I am retiring at the end of this Senedd term, I have—as have two other Members of the Government—had to work from home and haven't been able to travel. That has meant that I feel that I have a greater focus on what's happening in the sector, because we have been holding these regular meetings.

Important issues, like those discussions on new developments, which we may move on to later this morning, in terms of the contemporary art gallery and developments in Theatr Clwyd and the football museum—these things, to the extent that they can be developed during this period so that the plans are in place—. These organisations are ready to go when that's possible. So, we have been able to focus ministerial work and the work of officials more on engagement and discussion.

The best example, perhaps, is in tourism. I think that we've had 40 meetings, that's a meeting a week, virtually—and we had a meeting yesterday, as it happens—with representatives of the events sector and the tourism sector across Wales, which means that those working in the sector, and businesses and institutions, know exactly what the Government's thinking is.

Diolch. Cyn imi symud ymlaen, roeddwn i jest eisiau gofyn rhywbeth yn ôl i Jason Thomas, a oedd yn dweud bod yn rhaid inni gadw llygad—dwi'n credu mai dyna oedd eich geiriau—ar yr hyn sy'n digwydd yn Lloegr achos bod y rheolau'n wahanol. A fyddech chi efallai'n newid canlyniadau'r hyn rŷch chi'n ei wneud yn fan hyn—er enghraifft, beth sy'n agor a phryd—pe bai yna lwyddiant yn Lloegr gyda'r rhai o'r prosesau hynny? Dwi ddim yn gwybod a yw Jason eisiau dod yn ôl, neu a yw'r Gweinidog eisiau ateb hynny.  

Thank you. Before I move on, I just wanted to return to Jason Thomas, who said that we needed to keep an eye on what's happening in England because the rules are different there. Would you perhaps change decisions on what you do here, in terms of what opens and when, if there was success in England with some of the processes that they follow there? I don't know if Jason wants to come back or if the Minister wants to respond to that. 

I can come back in, Chair, if that's okay.

I think that it's all about having the most robust evidence base that you can possibly have before making decisions. So, at the moment, obviously, throughout the last 12 months, there have been virtually no events across the UK. But in our alert plan, we say that we will move to test and pilot events at alert level 2. In England, they've said that they're going to go slightly further than that, and they've committed to do quite large-scale events at the different tiers in their plan. So, when I say we need to look at England, we need to see that if they do proceed as they've indicated, and they do hold these larger events, we will need to see the analysis of how that's gone to inform our own decision if we are at an earlier stage in our alert level plan, if that makes sense. And it's not just England: we need to look globally as well. Wherever events are taking place where coronavirus is prevalent, we need to look at the mitigations that have been taken and what impact they have had, to inform our own decisions. And if those events have actually caused a spike in transmission, and the mitigations haven't been successful, that's obviously going to be quite significant for us in our own decisions.

If there's an opportunity, Chair, could I come back to the last question point as well? Only relatively briefly.

10:10

Diolch, Chair. So, in terms of the impact that the pandemic has had, as the Deputy Minister's said, clearly, some things have had to slightly move right, if I could call it that, because, effectively, all the team, all the officials, not just stakeholders as well, are absolutely completely consumed by trying to support livelihoods throughout the pandemic and the cultural recovery fund, et cetera. So, I think that's a given.

But there have been these incredible opportunities, if I can call them that, that have been presented to us. The cultural recovery fund itself has allowed us to develop relationships with organisations that we've never really had relationships with before, particularly those on the more commercial end of the cultural sector. We've been able to put in place a cultural contact with those that I think is really groundbreaking and is going to lead to some real structural changes in the whole cultural sector. We've spoken about this in the committee several times over the years, about under-representation and about concerns about social justice and wages in the sector. The cultural contract gives us an opportunity to address some of those over the longer term. And as the Deputy Minister said, the use of technology and just digital output is really transforming many of the players in this sector, and I think that's brought forward progress by a number of years, actually. So, there have been positives.

Grêt, a byddai'n dda inni, efallai, gael nodyn ynglŷn â manylion y contract diwylliannol. Yn sicr, mae'n swnio'n ddiddorol, ond mae diffyg amser o ran sgrwtineiddio'n fwy ar hynny nawr. Ond diolch yn fawr iawn am hynny.

Symud ymlaen at gwestiynau felly gan David Melding ar y celfyddydau. Diolch.

Great, and it would be good if we could get a note on the details of the cultural contract. It certainly sounds very interesting, but we don't necessarily have time to scrutinise that further now. But thank you for that.

If we can move on to questions from David Melding on the arts. Thank you.

Diolch yn fawr, Cadeirydd. Minister, can I just start by saying, like yourself and Carwyn, I'm about to enter the next phase and become, as I put it, 'a mischievous citizen's politician'? And I dare say you plan that and a lot more. But I would like to put on record that I've found your contribution in public life a source of constant stimulation. What it's stimulated has not always been agreement, but it's always been of interest, and I'm sure that's the view of all colleagues in this Senedd. So, my best wishes for the future.

I want to ask these questions in a sort of legacy context, really. As you know, committees prepare a legacy report where they reflect on the work they've conducted in the Senedd term and then cast an eye forward, and in that spirit really of looking at the Welsh Government's policies in the fifth Senedd, and then perhaps some of the lessons that whatever Government is constituted after the election you may want to mark. I think it's fair to say that, during this Senedd, there's been a lot of success in getting the very established organisations in the arts field, those that have a lot of institutional capacity for marketing and seeking sponsorship and generous commercial activity as well, to shift really to more self-dependency and to draw less on public funds. And I think this has strengthened the sector. But that whole strategy, obviously, has relied on a business model that's not been viable during the COVID pandemic. I just wonder what you think the consequences are for this, and also for the funding strategy of any future Welsh Government. Will we have to go back and have a transition stage, where more public support is going to have be offered to our flagship organisations? I'll come then on to the rest of the sector, which isn't at that sort of level of national/international importance. But, for that part, which is really important to the Welsh nation in so many ways, do you see the funding model having to change a bit in the next Senedd?

10:15

Thank you very much, David, for your kind remarks, and the feeling is mutual. So, we'll stop this mutual admiration society and get on with the business.

But I come from a lot of activity in the past with ABSA—the Association for Business Sponsorship of the Arts, which then became Arts & Business—and I was working alongside Rachel Jones, very early on, on the establishment of Arts & Business Cymru, and I am a firm believer in a model of sponsorship that is a mix of the public sector, whether it's central Government or whether it's local government, or increasingly now, hopefully, a consortia of local government in the regions. So, I think that's a very good way of going forward, because it takes me back to the days where I started off, when there were regional arts associations in different regions of Wales, and that brings together, then, the local authority and other public sector providers, along with the arts council. And I can only pay tribute, whenever I speak about this, to the way in which the arts council, under the amazing leadership of Nick Capaldi and the chair, Phil George, and other senior officials there, have led the process. Their ability to get money out of the door, rapidly, has been absolutely amazing. And that proves to me that public sector bodies, with strong leadership and with representative membership—and that means, particularly these days, that we have a look at, well, the colour of the skin and the faces around the board table, and the proportion of gender balance, all those issues, because that's part of the democratisation, as well as the commercialisation, up to a point, of the funding. So, that's the approach, and I think that approach has shown that it can work, and it has worked very well in Wales, even in this crisis.

I suppose what I'm trying to get at, really, is, given that the organisations, some of them, I think, were up to 80 per cent of self-generated funds, I mean, it's really been impressive, but that has not been feasible in the last year and it won't be feasible for, possibly, several years to come. And I just wonder how a future Government is going to have to handle that, and will it need a transitional strategy to get back to where we were before COVID struck? And, of course, this is dependent on things like, you know, will mass audiences be returning, and will that be done safely, and there are a lot of contingencies there. So, I just think, to have some sort of strategic view of that, or are we going to be in an exceptional situation for the foreseeable future, in terms of how we structure our—? What was a very coherent strategy is obviously, now, not been fit for this—. Well, 'not fit for emergency' is probably not the way to put it; it was just not appropriate because of the conditions of the emergency. And that's what I'm trying to get a sense of, when we may be through that phase.

Well, the big benefit that I've seen through this crisis is the substantial increase in digital working, and that, obviously, will continue, and the making of artwork and performance available to a much wider—and a new audience, very often—through all the digital platforms that we have. And that was always a priority for me, to develop the digital side, and I'm very pleased to see that organisations have been able to do that. I see no reason why that side of what we've learnt in terms of ways of working through the crisis cannot but increase exponentially.

10:20

Let me—. Oh, sorry. Let me just put the question in another way: are any of our major arts organisations—so, these are the ones that are operating at a national and international level—at risk of losing significant capacity in the near future?

Well, I hope I can say that the answer is 'no'. We have worked very closely with the Wales Millennium Centre; there's a very exciting project whereby the National Library of Wales is going to have a space in the millennium centre. I think this is exactly the kind of collaborative working between national organisations that I hope to see. I still manage to link in to the seminars that the WNO—Welsh National Opera—have been staging throughout this pandemic. There's a very good spirit and a very strong sense of determination in all our national institutions, and there's an appetite to work in creative ways.

David, before I bring you back to your questions, I know that your advisors have comments, Minister, but Helen Mary Jones just has a small supplementary. Diolch yn fawr, Helen.

Diolch, Cadeirydd. Jest yn mynd nôl at y pwynt a wnaeth y Gweinidog ynglŷn â'r gweithgareddau digidol, y gweithgareddau virtual, wrth gwrs, mae'r rhain wedi bod yn hynod o lwyddiannus ac, fel rydych chi'n dweud, wedi cyrraedd cynulleidfaoedd newydd, ond mae'n anodd i sefydliadau wneud arian drwy'r ffynonellau yna. So, jest i gyplysu gyda'r pwynt roedd David Melding yn ei wneud ynglŷn ag i ba raddau y bydd y sefydliadau yna yn gallu bod yn fwy self-sustaining yn ariannol, a fyddwch chi'n derbyn bod y gweithgareddau digidol ddim yn mynd i fod yn ateb i hyn? Maen nhw'n hynod o bositif mewn llawer o ffyrdd—yn cadw pobl yn gweithio yn y sector, yn creu cynulleidfaoedd newydd, yn enwedig i bethau fel yr opera—ond dydyn nhw ddim yn mynd i ddatrys y problemau ariannol, nag ydyn nhw?

Thank you, Chair. Just to return to the Minister's point on virtual and digital activities, of course, these have been very successful indeed and, as you say, they've reached new audiences, but it's difficult for organisations to make money via those sources. So, just to link to David Melding's point on to what extent those organisations and institutions can be financially more self-sustaining, would you accept that the digital activities aren't going to be the solution to this? They're very positive in many ways—they keep people in work in the sector, they bring in new audiences, particularly for things such as opera—but they're not going to solve the financial problems, are they?

Wel, dydyn nhw ddim yn datrys y problemau ariannol mewn un ffordd, ond maen nhw yn cynyddu cynulleidfa, ac mae hynny yn rhan o genhadaeth unrhyw Lywodraeth sydd yn cymryd diwylliant o ddifrif, oherwydd nid rhywbeth i'r bobl sydd yn galw eu hunain yn ddiwylliedig yw diwylliant. Ac mae diwylliant—rydw i'n adrodd geiriau fy mentor mawr Raymond Williams wrth siarad fel hyn—mae diwylliant yn perthyn i bawb, ac mae cyfle pawb i gyfranogi yn allweddol. Dwi'n meddwl bod y pwyslais ar y digidol ac ar hygyrchedd celfyddyd a pherfformio mewn pob math o sefyllfaoedd ar lwyfannau digidol yn symudiad, dwi'n gobeithio, fydd yn denu mwy a mwy, yn enwedig o'r genhedlaeth iau, oherwydd mae hyn yn cysylltu, wrth gwrs, yn agos â'r cwricwlwm newydd yn ein cyfundrefn addysg ni. Ac mae cael hygyrchedd i bob math o ddiwylliant yr un mor bwysig yn fy nhyb i ag ydy llythrennedd a gallu rhifyddol.

Well, no, they don't solve the financial problems in one way, but they do increase audiences, and that is part of the mission of any Government that takes culture seriously, because culture isn't something for the people who describe themselves as being cultured. And I'm repeating the words of my great mentor Raymond Williams in talking in these terms, but culture belongs to everyone, and an opportunity for everyone to participate is crucial. And I do think that the emphasis on digital and the accessibility of arts and performance in all kinds of settings and scenarios on digital platforms is a move that I hope will attract more and more, particularly people from younger generations, because this closely links with the new curriculum in our education system. And providing accessibility to culture of all kinds is just as important in my view as numeracy and literacy.

Diolch. Fe wnes i weld Steffan Roberts a Jason Thomas, a dydw i ddim yn siŵr pwy oedd yn gyntaf, felly pwy bynnag sydd eisiau mynd yn gyntaf. Jason.

Thank you. I think Steffan Roberts and Jason Thomas wanted to make a contribution. I'm not sure who's going to go first. Jason, perhaps.

Diolch, Chair. So, I think if I could come back Mr Melding's questions, it's a fascinating line of questions, because it does present almost an ideological challenge, really, for everybody in the sector. If you went back pre pandemic, I'm obviously generalising here, but you could certainly generalise to say that, in terms of where we wanted the sector to be over the previous five, 10 years, possibly even longer, we've wanted the sector to be more commercial and to be less reliant on the public purse. So, we've been driving through initiatives to make them more imaginative and to do that. When the pandemic hit, you could also really generalise and say that those who were the most reliant on the public purse were the most insulated, because their wages were already covered, effectively, by the public purse. So, those organisations that we have been driving to be more commercial then became the most impacted, which is unbelievably challenging. Now, we've worked really closely with all elements of the sector over the last 12 months, and I think it's fair to say that, from the big players to the small players, they do not see an immediate return out of this. It's going to take time for the public and paying customers to be comfortable again to go into venues, and that is going to take some time.

But then there will also be, I think, a challenge, which is: do we return to that strategic drive, which is to say to be more commercial, because there will obviously be a worry that a pandemic could hit again in the future and they then might be more exposed to it? My own sense of this is that things will return, I guess, more akin to what they were before; those commercially minded organisations will want to get back to that and just try to make themselves even more resilient. I think Mr Melding hit it on the head when he said that we will need some form of transitional arrangements, arrangements to get people back up and running, ultimately, to support the institutions to be more commercial again into the future, although we acknowledge that is going to take even more time now because of all of this. But, ultimately, it's to get commercial organisations back up and running and thriving again. But it is a real, I guess, like I said, ideological challenge for all of us, and we've got to learn from what's happened over the last 12 months.

10:25

Steffan, oeddech chi eisiau ychwanegu at hynny? Steffan Roberts.

Steffan, did you want to add to that?

Diolch, Cadeirydd. Just very quickly, yes, I totally agree. A sustainable business model has literally crashed overnight, and I think the approach we have in place now—. There's the short-term approach, the short-term approach being making sure these organisations can survive and are still there at the end of the pandemic—so, the mechanisms we have in place like the cultural recovery fund and the job retention scheme are a key part of that. But then it takes us more towards the medium and longer term approach that we will need to have in place, just to make sure—. We all recognise there will need to be some extended support to make sure these organisations can return safely, but also, very importantly, with consumer confidence, so that they can return sustainably as well into the future. Diolch, Cadeirydd.

Thank you, Chair. Thank you for those answers, for all the answers. I think that's helpful to have on the record, and it's certainly been my analysis of the situation as well, so I'm pleased that this type of planning is going on.

The second area—I just want to look at what assessment you make of the Fusion policy. This committee, of course, did quite a lot of work looking at the Fusion policy, and I found it very interesting. I was impressed by the way it was getting the established institutions to really examine themselves. Minister, you've already referred to that in part, in saying that the Welsh Government, in increasing public funding, again, through the crisis, has obviously had more leverage, and they've had more time to attend to some of these matters. But it also looked at the big gaps in community arts provision, particularly the ethnic minorities and those on low incomes and in areas of considerable deprivation, and you quoted Raymond Williams, along the lines of, 'To be human is to be cultural,' which is something I emphatically agree with. Where do we stand with Fusion and how strong a force do you think it needs to be to shape policy in this area in the next Senedd?

Well, Fusion is a programme that we regard as a priority, not least because, of course, it was the brainchild of Baroness Andrews. We both met originally when she was a senior librarian in the House of Commons, before she became a parliamentarian. Kay Andrews has taken a strong interest and has visited us and has had discussions with us about the development of the Fusion programme.

So, there is a total of £250,000 in the budget to support Fusion co-ordinators. These are people that work within communities, that work with local authorities—in my memory, I think it's eight co-ordinators; it may not be, that may not be accurate, and I know one of my colleagues, the officials, will correct me. But the idea is that we create opportunities for individuals to access employment, to work in partnership, and cultural and heritage bodies are, of course, prioritising volunteering opportunities, work placements, training, and encouraging individuals to become involved in local culture. And I sincerely hope that Welsh Government will still, in the future, see the development of the Fusion philosophy and practice as an appropriate priority. As I say, it's £250,000 that is in the current budget. 

10:30

Thank you for that. You may recall, Minister, that in our report we thought the Fusion co-ordinators were absolutely key and it was the highest priority, we felt, because, beyond their immediate work, they shape a lot of what's happening in terms of public resources and can give advice also to larger institutions about their own programmes and accessibility. So, I think we would all agree on this committee that it should remain a priority. 

My final question is just to get some idea and an update on where we are with the national contemporary gallery, and also the proposals for a football museum. I think both have had working groups that were in their final stages of coming up with plans. There's a fair amount still in the budget, as I understand it—some £9 million or so. I think what I'd like to get an idea of is what sort of capital investment will there be in Wrexham in terms of making that fit for a national museum site for football, and then the hub-and-spoke idea in terms of the contemporary gallery. If you could just confirm, I think the concept is that there would be some capacity in an existing location that's increased, rather than a completely new venue. But I think it would be useful to know where we are and how spade-ready we are in terms of the next Government being able press the button for this work to proceed. 

Well, we are very spade-ready, I hope. Certainly, I'm very happy with the development in Wrexham, where Wrexham County Borough Council has been leading the project to create a football museum for Wales and, if I can use the expression, a spiritual home as well as a historic home for Welsh football. And I think the potential development, going back to our previous discussion, of commercial funding, which is now available to Wrexham Football Club in a way that it wasn't until recently, gives very exciting possibilities for a public-private partnership in Wrexham. Despite the pandemic, the steering group still has been meeting, and the consultants Fourth Street have produced a business case, which is now under consideration by the steering group. We anticipate a spend of £75,000 of a total of £445,000 project planning grant this year, but we expect the majority of the spend to be happening in the next financial year. So that is definitely progressing.

Now, the national contemporary art gallery, of course, is something that I took a clear decision about. I didn't want to see a white box built in Cardiff; I wanted something that would involve communities and involve regions throughout Wales. And I have been continually in dialogue with my old friend whose work is on the wall up behind me here, Mary Lloyd Jones, who is a doyenne of the artists in Wales, and she was very determined and very concerned if there was any delay in moving forward with this. So, I'm pleased to say publicly that, following the conclusions of the initial feasibility study carried out in partnership between the arts council and Amgueddfa Cymru and the Rural Office for Architecture, ROA, which has been commissioned to carry out an initial high-level impact assessment for each of the venues that have come forward on the select list—. So, there's a total of 10 prospective locations for the contemporary art gallery, and more detailed work and a final report is due this month. In the meantime, the steering group has continued to work through the pandemic and we've seen some very exciting initiatives, especially under the banner of Celf ar y Cyd. And a total of £1.54 million has been committed to the project, with around £356,000 spent to date.

10:35

And, Minister, have you decided or has there been a recommendation yet of where the hub will be and whether that will involve any substantial capital investment?

Steffan Roberts. Sori, mae'r Gweinidog—ar fy sgrin i, ta beth—wedi diflannu, felly efallai ei fod e'n cael problemau gyda'r cyfrifiadur, ond Steffan Roberts, ydych chi eisiau dod i mewn ar hynny?

Sorry, the Minister's disappeared from my screen, and so he may be having some problems, but Steffan Roberts, do you want to come in at that point?

Diolch. Just to confirm—so, £9 million is the figure for both projects. That's the capital budget we have in place for both projects, and that is earmarked in reserve at this stage. And as the Deputy Minister mentioned there, both projects are following a similar path. There are steering groups in place, guiding activities and guiding the preparatory work there. We are looking to enhance existing facilities, so not looking at any new facilities or distributed model for the contemporary art gallery.

So, we're at a stage where the preparatory work is very much in place; we've been working with consultants in developing business plans and a business case. So, once those plans and cases have been considered by the steering group, the group will then provide advice to the Minister on the final shape and the final proposal to be taken forward. So, we hope we'll be in a position to provide more detail on that after we've considered all the business cases.

Diolch. Yn sgil y ffaith ein bod ni wedi colli'r Dirprwy Weinidog ar y sgrin, dŷn ni'n mynd i gymryd brêc technegol, yn anffodus, ond, ar ôl y brêc technegol, gobeithio y bydd pawb yn ôl gyda ni. Diolch.

Thank you. Given that we seem to have lost the Deputy Minister, we will take a technical break, unfortunately, but, after that technical break, hopefully everyone will be back. Thank you.

Gohiriwyd y cyfarfod rhwng 10:37 ac 10:43.

The meeting adjourned between 10:37 ac 10:43.

10:40

Diolch, ac ymddiheuriadau am y problemau technegol. Rydyn ni wedi croesawu'r Dirprwy Weinidog yn ôl nawr. Felly, rydyn ni'n mynd i symud ymlaen at gwestiynau eraill gan John Griffiths ynglŷn â threftadaeth, amgueddfeydd ac archifau. Diolch, John.

Thank you, and apologies for the technical difficulties. We've been able to welcome the Deputy Minister back, so we'll move on to further questions from John Griffiths on heritage, museums and archives. Thank you, John.

Diolch yn fawr, Cadeirydd. Yes, first of all, Deputy Minister, in terms of the recently announced extra funding for the national library and the national museum, could you let the committee know in a little bit more detail than has currently been stated what that funding will be used for?

Yes, I'm very pleased that we were able to come to an agreement within Welsh Government—an agreement for the major institutions that we resource. On the library—and I had discussions only yesterday with the president, Meri Huws, and the chief executive, Pedr ap Llwyd—it's £0.5 million in the financial year 2020-21 for operating costs, enabling the library to implement the pay award on the same terms as the civil service and the contribution to pension costs. And I'm absolutely delighted that we have been able to provide equality of conditions of employment for the people who work in the library on the same basis as the Welsh civil service.

Then we have the tailored review, which you'll be familiar with, and the implementation of the recommendations. There is £0.75 million in the coming financial year for the implementation of the tailored review, and there is a further £1 million in the coming financial year to protect jobs and support operating costs. So, there will be no compulsory redundancies in the library. They are at the moment implementing a voluntary redundancy scheme, and I don't know the exact numbers that that will affect, but it means that the library has stability of funding. Did you want the national museum figures as well? 

10:45

Before we go on to the national museum, I wonder if you could tell committee whether that funding for the national library will enable all the recommendations of the recent review to be taken forward.

Well, that is the intention. The £750,000 supports the implementation of the recommendations, and there is a long equivalent of a remit letter that they have and which they've agreed to. So, the library has developed an action plan, and the action plan now combines their strategic thinking with the tailored review with the broader indications that my senior officials and I have put in their letter. The detailed costings have been worked out on the recommendations and, as I say, I met the library earlier this week and confirmed that the partnership will continue to make progress. So, I'm much relieved that we've been able to resolve that issue, and I'm very grateful to the finance Minister and colleagues in the Welsh Government and the First Minister for his support in ensuring this agreement. 

Steffan Roberts, mae gennych chi rywbeth i'w ychwanegu.

Steffan Roberts, I believe you wanted to contribute at this point. 

Jest i ychwanegu bod yna gynllun gweithredu, fel mae'r Dirprwy Weinidog wedi sôn fanna, mewn lle. Rydym ni wedi cytuno ar gynllun gweithredu gyda'r llyfrgell, gweithio mewn partneriaeth ar y cynllun yma. Rydym ni wedi rhannu hwnna gyda'r pwyllgor er gwybodaeth. Felly, 34 argymhelliad. Fel roedd y Dirprwy Weinidog yn sôn fanna, mae'r £750,000 ar gyfer y flwyddyn nesaf. Y bwriad fanna yw ein bod ni'n gallu symud yn gyflym ar rai o'r argymhellion penodol hynny y gallwn ni roi yn eu lle yn gyflym iawn flwyddyn nesaf. Felly, canolbwyntio ar gyfleoedd masnachol, canolbwyntio ar ymgysylltu, ymgysylltu digidol, ac yn y blaen. Felly, blaenoriaethau y gallwn ni symud ymlaen arnyn nhw'n gyflym.

Jest i nodi'n gyflym hefyd, rydym ni yn gweithio ar y manylion o fewn y £750,000 gyda'r llyfrgell. Does dim cynllun penodol mewn lle eto. Rydym ni'n gobeithio symud ar hwnna yn gyflym iawn, ac mae'r llyfrgell yn gweithio ar hynny ar frys ar gyfer y flwyddyn newydd.  

I would just add that there is an action plan, as the Deputy Minister just mentioned, in place. We've agreed on that action plan with the library and we're working in partnership on it. We've shared that with the committee for your information. There are 34 recommendations. As the Deputy Minister just mentioned, the £750,000 is for next year. The intention there is for us to move quickly on some of those specific recommendations that we can put in place very swiftly next year. So, we'll be focusing on commercial opportunities, engagement, digital engagement, and so on and so forth. So, they are priorities that we can make progress on quickly. 

Just to also briefly note, we are working on the detail within that £750,000 with the library. There's no specific plan in place at the moment, but we hope to move quickly on that, and the library is working on that as a matter of urgency for the next financial year. 

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Cyn galw John Griffiths yn ôl, dwi wedi darllen y llythyr hynny ac, yn amlwg, yn eithaf pryderus i ddarllen nad oedd y llyfrgell yn gallu denu rhywun i'r rôl masnachol hynny. Mae'r swydd wedi cael ei chreu nawr, gyda rhywun oedd yna'n barod, i ddatblygu'r elfennau busnes yn y llyfrgell. Ydych chi'n hyderus bod yr arbenigedd yno o fewn y llyfrgell i allu gwneud hynny? Yn sicr, roedd yr adolygiad yn cynnig bod angen rôl newydd. Nid yw hynny wedi gallu digwydd. Beth yw'ch barn chi yn hynny o beth? Ydych chi'n hyderus y byddan nhw'n gallu gwneud y newididadau sydd eu hangen arnyn nhw? 

Thank you very much. Just before I call John Griffiths back, I have read that letter, and clearly I was quite concerned to read that the library couldn't attract someone to that commercial role. A post has been created now, with an existing member of staff developing business elements within the library. Are you confident that the expertise exists within the library to be able to do that? The review proposed a new role. That hasn't been able to be delivered. So, what's your view on that? Are you confident that they will be able to make the necessary changes? 

Wel, maen nhw wedi ymrwymo i'w gwneud nhw yn y trafodaethau rydym ni wedi'u cael yr wythnos yma, ac felly rydw i'n ymddiried ynddyn nhw i wneud nhw. A dwi wedi cael sicrwydd uniongyrchol mewn trafodaeth fel hyn gan y prif weithredwr a gan lywydd y llyfrgell.  Mae hi, Meri Huws, wedi cytuno i aros yn y swydd tan fyddwn ni wedi gallu penodi olynydd fel llywydd, oherwydd rydyn ni'n meddwl ei bod hi'n bwysig iawn i roi cadernid rheolaeth, am yr union resymau rydych chi wedi eu disgrifio, Gadeirydd, sef yr angen i barhau â'r edrych tuag allan sydd yn hanfodol i lyfrgell genedlaethol. Roeddwn i'n wastad yn meddwl ei bod hi'n bwysig i'r llyfrgell genedlaethol fod yn sefydliad cenedlaethol sydd yn gallu cysylltu drwy lyfrgelloedd eraill Cymru, sydd mewn perchnogaeth neu weinyddiaeth llywodraeth leol neu brifysgolion neu beth bynnag ydyn nhw, a bod yna bartneriaeth newydd yn datblygu yn gadarn rhwng y llyfrgell genedlaethol, a bod yr ymweliadau digidol a gweithgaredd y llyfrgell yn cynyddu'n sylweddol yn ystod y cyfnod yma, hyd at yr adeg y byddwn ni wedi, gobeithio, dod mas o effeithiau'r pla mawr.

Well, they committed to making those changes in the discussions that we've had just this week, and so I trust in them to do that. And I've been given direct assurances in discussion with the chief executive and the president of the library. Meri Huws has agreed to remain in post until we've been able to appoint a successor president, because we think it's very important to provide that resilience of management for the very reasons that you've described, Chair, namely this need to continue to look outwards, which is so crucial for a national library. I always thought that it was important for the national library to be a national institution that could engage through other Welsh libraries, be they in the ownership of local authorities or universities or wherever that may be, and that a strong partnership would develop between them and the national library, and that the digital engagement and the activity of the library would increase substantially during this period, until when we hopefully come out of the impacts of the pandemic.

10:50

Sori, John; un cwestiwn arall gen i. Ynglŷn â diswyddiadau gwirfoddol, ydych chi'n meddwl ei bod hi'n anffodus bod unrhyw ddiswyddiadau yn gorfod digwydd nawr, yn sgil y ffaith eich bod chi wedi rhoi arian ychwanegol? Yn sicr, mae rhai o'r undebau wedi dod ataf i, fel Cadeirydd, yn dweud y bydden nhw wedi hoffi petasai'r llyfrgell wedi tynnu nôl y cynllun diswyddiadau ar unrhyw lefel. Wrth gwrs, mae e'n wych nad ydyn nhw'n mynd i wneud diswyddiadau gorfodol, ond yn sicr mae yna densiwn o hyd gyda diswyddiadau yn digwydd ynddyn nhw eu hun. Beth yw eich barn chi yn hynny o beth?

Sorry, John; just a further question from me. In terms of the voluntary redundancies, would you agree that it's unfortunate that any redundancies would have to happen now, given the fact that you have provided this additional funding? Certainly, some of the unions have approached me as Chair, saying that they would have preferred if the library had withdrawn that redundancy programme at any level. Of course, it's wonderful that there will be no compulsory redundancies, but there is certainly a remaining tension with these redundancies happening. What's your view on that?

Dwi ddim yn meddwl ei fod o'n briodol i mi, fel y Gweinidog sy'n cyllido'r llyfrgell, i ddweud wrthyn nhw sut i reoli'r lle. Dwi'n ymddiried yn sgiliau'r bwrdd, ac rydyn ni'n ceisio cryfhau'r bwrdd hefyd, wrth gwrs, o ran cydbwysedd cynrychiolaeth. A'r prif weithredwr presennol, dwi'n sicr yn gallu ymddiried ynddo fo i weithredu hyn mewn ffordd fydd yn deg. Ac mae'n rhaid i ni fod yn barod yn y sector gyhoeddus i arfer polisïau cyflogaeth sydd ar lefel sydd yn cysoni beth sydd yn y digwydd yn y sefydliadau mawr yma rydyn ni'n eu noddi efo'r hyn sydd yn digwydd o fewn gwasanaeth sifil Cymru. Dyna sydd wedi digwydd erbyn hyn drwy'r cyllid ychwanegol ar gyfer datrys y cais cyflog a chysoni amodau'r gwasanaeth sifil o ran cyflogaeth efo'r sawl sydd yn gweithio yn y llyfrgell, fel eu bod nhw'n ymwybodol eu bod nhw'n weision cyhoeddus ac yn cael eu cydnabod yn hynny o beth, a dwi'n meddwl y bydd yr ad-drefnu mewnol sydd yn digwydd o dan arweiniad y prif weithredwr a'r llywydd yn cryfhau'r modd y bydd y llyfrgell yn fwy cynaliadwy at y dyfodol.

I don't think it's appropriate for me, as the Minister funding the library, to tell them how to manage the place. I trust in the skills of the board, and we're trying to strengthen the board, too, of course, in terms of representational balance, and I certainly also have full confidence in the current chief executive to operate in a way that will be fair. And we do have to be willing in the public sector to exercise employment policies at a level that standardises the situation between our sponsored bodies and the Welsh civil service. That's what has now happened, given this additional funding, in order to resolve that issue around employment and to provide consistency with the Welsh civil service in terms of employment for those working in the library, so that they are fully aware that they are public servants and recognised as such, and I do think that the internal reorganisation that's happening, led by the chief executive and president, will strengthen the way in which the library will become more sustainable for the future.

If we can move on, then, Deputy Minister, to the national museum and what the announced funding will do for the national museum.

Well, I'm very pleased that it's confirmed that the final budget for the national museum is significantly higher than in previous years: £6.7 million for 2021-22, which compares very favourably with the £4.2 million in 2020-21 and the £2.1 million in the previous financial year—get those figures right. So, the increased allocation of £6.7 million recognises the importance of the museum's buildings and the costs, of course, of maintaining traditional buildings like National Museum Cardiff within Amgueddfa Cymru. There is a master plan as part of that development, and I discussed that with them again earlier this week, and procurement for contractors to develop the master plan is imminent. The work hopefully with commence in April/May 2022, and there will be 10 years to complete that work, which will mean that the traditional building in Cathays Park will be very much in a fit state. But, in addition to that, of course, there is new investment, especially the investment in what is currently known as the slate museum, hopefully to be known in the future as amgueddfa'r gogledd, the museum of the north, to indicate its greater role. The ambition of the current director general, David Anderson, is that the museum of the north will be a suitable sister museum to the developments to improve the infrastructure in Cathays Park. I look forward to this investment in the north as well over the next financial years. 

10:55

Diolch, Cadeirydd. I just wanted to share the revenue detail as well, just to complement the capital there from the Deputy Minister. So, in a similar way to the library, this was an announcement over two years. So, there's £1.45 million for this—for the current—year to support operating costs, including a pay award and a contribution to pension costs. For next year, it's £2.5 million to support operating costs. So, that complements the capital package, the £6.7 million mentioned by the Deputy Minister. Diolch, Cadeirydd.

Just in terms of the scale of the capital spend that's required, Deputy Minister, I think that we heard from the museum a figure of some £50 million for the backlog in repair and maintenance. As you mentioned, some of that spend will be necessary in terms of visitor facilities at the Cathays Park museum. We also heard from them that there are two buildings at St Fagans that are closed and likely to be permanently closed, given the state of the available capital to the museum. So, in terms of the scale of the challenge, how many years is it likely to take before we are likely to see the sort of progress that we would all want to see in terms of improving those facilities and making the necessary progress?

Again, as I replied earlier, I'm not trying to micromanage the museums' implementation of the funding made available to them. All that I can tell you is that my most recent discussion this week with the museum president, Roger Lewis, and with the director general and with the senior financial and planning staff of the museum—. They are more than implementing currently what was set out in the so-called Thurley review, by Simon Thurley, in 2017 and the recommendations that were made. What I cannot do is give you a figure of when the total capital required to refurbish the whole estate of the national museum will be completed. It'll certainly be well beyond what I can look at at the moment.

The problem that we have, as you know, with public funding, is that we work on an annual basis. It is essential, in my view—and I have said this internally, as well as saying it now to your committee, and it would be very helpful if you could look at this as a committee and perhaps make a recommendation—that, where there are institutions of this kind operating with a substantial capital programme for refurbishment to maintain the quality of the estate, public funds should be able to be distributed to them with a clear indicative basis, that there is an understanding and, of course, helpfully, cross-party support across the Assembly, so that there would be budget planning of capital investment over a longer period than the two years that I am able to do at the moment.

Diolch. Steffan Roberts, roeddech chi eisiau cyfrannu ar y pwynt yma.

Steffan Roberts, I believe that you wanted to contribute.

Yes, I was just going to add or raise the point that the Minister made at the end there, really. So, just a couple of points very quickly. So, the £6.7 million is probably the highest level, in terms of capital budget, it's been for many a year in terms of the museum, and that's part of the additional funding made at the final budget as part of the capital stimulus package that was announced recently. I think that's the main challenge there—yes, maintaining the estate across seven sites is a particular challenge, and the fact that we still operate within one-year budgets. The hope and the ambition is that there will be a comprehensive spending review, and, if we had a multi-year budget, then at least there's a longer outlook then in terms of how we can support the museum in managing that estate over a longer period.

11:00

You mentioned the Thurley review, Deputy Minister, and one of the findings of that review was that:

'The Museum feels that it is not being listened to in terms of its funding requirements and that the Welsh Government is not clear about what a national museum is for.'

Now, that was three years ago. How would say matters have moved on in those terms since then?

Well, Welsh Government currently understands exactly what the role of a national museum is, and it's a joy to be working with them with the current enthusiasm in the leadership of the museum, and I hope that this will continue and develop for the future. National institutions—especially when they are managed as they are in Wales, in an internally devolved way—are key spaces for the public, visitors to Wales, and also as part of the education system, working with the national curriculum. The role of a national museum is to provide an image of the future of the country in relation to its material past, and I admire very much the curating skill of the current leadership of the museum and, indeed, the leadership of Roger Lewis himself. And I'm sure that this attitude will continue to thrive for the future.

Okay. One final question from me, then, and it's on historic place names. To what extent has the list of historic place names helped to provide necessary protection? And do we need further protection?

Well, the historic place names, of course, are maintained by another of my favourite nineteenth-century / early twentieth-century Welsh institutions, the royal commission. It's the royal commission that maintains this list. The list of historic place names of Wales has already worked to protect historic place names, and I'm grateful for the support of the local authorities, especially, if I can say, Ceredigion and Ynys Môn, which have been very successful in persuading applicants to retain historic place names. But I will give you an undertaking, to the extent that I can give undertakings at this late stage in a Parliament—we as a Government will continue to keep our policies for Welsh place names under review. We are considering whether there should be further options in the future and, if necessary, that could include legislation. But it's useful to note that what I read on the nation.cymru website recently—the article, I think, coincided with St David's Day—was that the number of people changing their house names into Welsh rather than English was of a ratio of 4:1.

Felly, mae'r iaith yn dod yn ôl ar enwau cartrefi.

So, the Welsh language is being restored on our house names.

So, in that sense, the current system is working, but, as I said to you, it's not for me to try to commit future Welsh Governments, but the option of legislation may well be returned to in the future, if it is seen to be required. But, as I say, the current system being operated by the comisiwn henebion on our behalf, by the royal commission, is working positively.

11:05

Symud ymlaen, felly, at y diwydiannau creadigol. Helen Mary Jones.

We'll move on, therefore, to the creative industries. Helen Mary Jones.

Diolch yn fawr, Cadeirydd. I droi yn gyntaf, Dirprwy Weinidog, at gynlluniau ar gyfer strategaeth genedlaethol cerddoriaeth, ble ydym ni? Allwch chi ein diweddaru ni ynglŷn â ble ydym ni yn y broses o ddatblygu'r strategaeth? Ydych chi wedi dod at y pwynt lle rydych chi wedi adnabod blaenoriaethau o beth sydd yn debyg o fod yn y strategaeth, ac a ydych chi wedi comisiynu unrhyw ymchwil ychwanegol i gryfhau neu roi gwybodaeth ichi ynglŷn â beth ddylai strategaeth felly bod fel?

Thank you very much, Chair. If I could turn first, Deputy Minister, to plans for a national music strategy, can you give us an update as to where we are in the process of developing that music strategy? Have you reached a point where you've identified priorities for the strategy, and have you commissioned any additional research in order to strengthen or to provide you with further information as to what such a strategy should look like?

Fe ofynnaf i Gerwyn Evans, fel cyfarwyddwr, i ateb hwn yn fanwl, ond cyn belled â fy mod i yn y cwestiwn, mae Cymru Greadigol wedi datblygu cynllun gweithredol, yn arbennig ar gyfer y diwydiant cerddoriaeth fasnachol, ac mae hwn yn allweddol o bwysig, wrth gwrs, oherwydd bod yr effaith, yn y pla mawr yma, wedi bod mor ddifrifol ar ganolfannau cerdd, a dwi yn ddiolchgar i'r grŵp ymgynghorol rhanddeiliaid cerdd, sydd wedi cael ei ffurfio, a'r modd maen nhw wedi cydweithio â Chymru Greadigol i ddangos inni beth sydd yn bosib inni ei wneud. Ac fe ofynnaf i Gerwyn i ychwanegu, diolch yn fawr, os caf i.

I will ask Gerwyn Evans, as director, to respond in detail, but, as far as I'm concerned, Creative Wales has developed an action plan specifically for the commercial music industry, and this is crucially important, of course, because the impact of this pandemic has been so grave on the music sector. And I'm grateful to the consultative group of music stakeholders that was drawn together for the way that they have worked with Creative Wales to show us what is possible in this area. And I'll ask Gerwyn to add to that. Thank you.

Thank you. Yes. So, in terms of the action plan that the Deputy Minister referred to there, Helen Mary Jones, it hasn't been developed yet; we're planning to work on that. Obviously, the music sector has been the most impacted by COVID within the Creative Wales remit. We talked about the cultural recovery fund 2 earlier on in the meeting, so we will need to support the music sector through the cultural recovery fund 2, alongside working on opportunities as well. So, we'll be taking a two-track approach to supporting the music industry through the next year.

Can I thank the committee for the recent report into live music, which has helped me and helped the team engage with a lot more partners around how we need to take a music action plan forward? So, we've got a much better overall relationship with the arts council around the working relationship there, much better knowledge and understanding of what our colleagues in education are doing around music. So, while Creative Wales's remit will be around the commercial side of the music sector, there are a lot of positive conversations going on now about taking forward a number of the recommendations that came out of the live inquiry into music. So, really positive, I think, and, hopefully, through this year, we'll be developing the action plan, as the Minister alluded to there.

Diolch. Jason Thomas, rydych chi eisiau ychwanegu pwynt.

Thank you. Jason Thomas, I think you wanted to add a point.

Diolch, Cadeirydd. Only a brief one: I think that there is a great opportunity, if I could call it that, when we look at the action plan for music, to look at what's happening on the high street, to look at regeneration in towns and communities—not just music, the wider creative industries more generally. But, if you look at high streets across the length and breadth of Wales, which have been impacted by COVID, the impact on retail across the board, I do think there's a really strong role for the creative industries to play in the high street of the future. So, I think that's going to feature very much in the action plan as well.

Thank you. Before I turn to my next question, I should say that in the evidence that we've heard over the last year, in various different inquiries, witnesses have been very positive about Creative Wales, and, considering that it was a brand-new institution when the crisis hit and you weren't really set up to be dealing with a crisis or distributing funding or any of that, I think, as a committee, we heard some very positive things, and I think it's right, Chair, to put that on record again and to pass that on, really.

Wrth ymateb i adroddiad y pwyllgor ar gynyrchiadau ffilm a theledu mawr, dywedodd Llywodraeth Cymru:

'Bydd strategaeth gadarn i gefnogi ein diwydiant sgrin yn rhan hanfodol o gynlluniau ehangach Cymru Greadigol.'

So, allwch chi ein diweddaru ni ynglŷn â ble ydym ni gyda'r strategaeth yna, neu ydy hyn yn rhywbeth sydd wedi gorfod cael ei roi i un ochr tra eich bod chi wedi bod yn ymateb i'r crisis?

Now, in responding to the committee's report on film and major television, the Welsh Government said:

'A robust strategy to support our Screen industry will be a vital part of the wider plans for Creative Wales.'

So, can you give us an update as to where we are with that strategy, or is that something that's had to be shelved whilst you've been responding to the crisis?

11:10

Na, buaswn i ddim yn dweud hynny—ac eto, fe ofynnaf i Gerwyn ychwanegu. Rydyn ni wedi bod yn gweithio efo partneriaid o fewn y diwydiant i ddatblygu canllawiau er mwyn i'r diwydiant sgrîn, ffilm a theledu allu dod yn ôl i weithio. Mae hynny wedi golygu ein bod ni wedi gallu cefnogi cynyrchiadau oddi mewn a'r tu allan i Gymru. Mae 11 o gynyrchiadau newydd wedi'u cefnogi yn y flwyddyn 2020. Mae hynny'n cynnwys cynhyrchu lleol wedi'i gomisiynu gan y BBC, gan Little Door Productions, Willow a Lucasfilm, ac rydyn ni'n gobeithio y bydd—wel, rydym yn sicr sydd yn mynd i ddechrau ffilmio yn y gwanwyn. Y flaenoriaeth yw cynnal a datblygu'r diwydiant sgrîn fel bod Cymru'n parhau i fod yn lleoliad uchel ar restr unrhyw gwmni sydd eisiau cynhyrchu celf a gweithgaredd ffilm a theledu, ac rydyn ni'n sicr bod y buddsoddiad sydd wedi cael ei wneud gan Lywodraeth Cymru, a'r modd y mae Cymru Greadigol yn arbennig wedi gweithio mewn cydweithrediad gyda Phrifysgol De Cymru a sefydliadau eraill ynglŷn â hyfforddiant a datblygu sgiliau—. Mi adawaf i Gerwyn ddweud y gweddill, os caf i.

No, I wouldn't say that—and, again, I'll ask Gerwyn to add his comments to this. We have been working with partners within the industry to develop guidance so that the screen, film and television industry can get back to work. And that has meant that we've been able to support productions within and outwith Wales. Eleven new productions have been supported during 2020. That includes local productions commissioned by the BBC, Little Door Productions, Willow and Lucasfilm, which we hope—or rather we're certain—will start filming in spring. The priority is to maintain and develop the industry so that Wales continues to be a location that is high on the agenda of any company that wants to produce film and television productions, and we're certain that the investment made by the Welsh Government, and the way in which Creative Wales particularly has worked in collaboration with the University of South Wales and other institutions in terms of training and skills development—. But I will ask Gerwyn to fill in the gaps, if I may.

Diolch—thank you, Deputy Minister. So, yes, it's a similar situation with screen as with music. So, we did plan to develop industry-led action plans when we launched back in January last year and, obviously, with COVID, we were unable to do that, but we did bring together the engagement groups, which have been very, very useful and very helpful to us working through the pandemic and supporting our cultural recovery fund, design et cetera. And that's been hugely welcomed, the engagement from the sector.

But in terms of screen, it's been pretty successful actually over the last year, even through COVID. So, the sector went back to work pretty early with the guidance that we provided, working with colleagues across the UK to get the sector back as quickly as we could. War of the Worlds filming in Newport was the first high-end drama to be back in production in the whole of the UK, and that was following an investment from the Welsh Government. So, it's a hugely positive story on screen, which has been building up for a number of years.

And I think it's fair to say that we're now trying to take a balanced portfolio approach to our investments. So, it's great that we've got Lucasfilm coming in, and as the Deputy Minister said, they're starting to shoot very shortly, but we want to take a balanced approach because we want to support that thriving indigenous production company structure, and we've run a development funding programme through COVID for them this year, and we'll be doing that again next year. So, we want to provide support at all levels of the screen sector, ensuring that we provide support in Cardiff but outside of Cardiff as well. There's a report due to come out next week from our partners who run Clwstwr through Cardiff University showing that the growth in Cardiff over the past decade has been phenomenal; we need to now try and replicate some of that growth in other parts of Wales. So, there's definitely—. It's an industry-led action plan that we're looking to create this year, and there are definitely opportunities for us to grow the sector, both in the south-east, but around the rest of Wales as well, working much more closely with the public sector broadcasters, aligning all our development funding, so that—. We've have some good success stories of some of our indigenous production companies having small amounts of money picking up 30-series shows on Channel 4, as an example, very recently. So, it's about having that balanced portfolio where we invest, it's not just the big productions that we want to be seen to be investing in.

Thank you. My last question is quite a specific one, and this may be, Deputy Minister, that you might want to turn to officials for this, because there are matters of detail. Can you tell us how the agreement with Great Point Media to lease and manage the Seren Stiwdios differs from the arrangement that was previously in place with Pinewood?

Yes, the agreement with Pinewood came to an end on 31 March 2020, and the relationship that we have now with Seren Stiwdios is entirely different. There's a 10-year lease agreement on market terms with an option to acquire and expand. Great Point pay Welsh Government to lease the facility in its entirety, and will seek to bring productions into Wales through their access to a global network of industry contacts. I have met with them and I'm delighted at this new and positive relationship, although, of course, having said that, the name Pinewood was useful in its time, but it's clear to me that this arrangement is much better for the future. 

11:15

Jason Thomas, roeddech chi eisiau dod i mewn, rwy'n credu, dwi ar ddeall, os ydw i'n iawn.

Jason Thomas, you wanted to come in at this point, that's what I understood.

Diolch, Gadeirydd. Thank you. I think I would summarise it as the previous arrangement with Pinewood was complicated, and certainly you as a committee and Public Accounts Committee—my predecessor has been here several times discussing Pinewood. We've learnt lessons from the arrangement there, and we're all, hopefully, ready to move on now. We've got a great relationship with Great Point, they're a fantastic team with an amazing track record globally, and the opportunities that they present, going forward, are really significant. They're a really great company to work with. So, the new arrangement is very simple. It's a fairly standard lease arrangement with them that just everybody will be able to scrutinise and understand, and it gives us a really good platform to develop other opportunities, and we are really keen on doing that. 

I just wanted to ask a supplementary to Gerwyn Evans based on your answer to Helen Mary Jones on the indigenous sector, and I just wanted to understand: does that mean that you will be looking to develop different strategies, per se, for large-scale operations that may attract international commercial companies, to that of the Welsh scene, and the Welsh language scene, for that matter, as we noted in our report? I just wanted to try and understand what your thinking was in that regard.

Thank you, Chair. It's trying to, as I say, get that balance across what we're investing in. So, we will be working with our screen working group to draft the action plan, but we've obviously been very successful at high-end drama over the last few years. I think there's an opportunity to do more on the factual stuff. There's definitely an opportunity to work with S4C more around some Welsh language productions. So, we will be developing MoUs—memorandums of understanding with each of the PSBs in Wales, and they'll all be around opportunities aligning those development funds, but also taking some of our production companies to the next level, as well, so investing in them to bring in work with bigger productions, so really supporting the grass roots in a way that helps them grow, but, at the same time, if there's an opportunity like Lucasfilm that comes along and we think it's right, at the right time of the year in terms of crew availability, et cetera, we'll take that as an opportunity. But very much the focus will be on supporting the indigenous grass-roots sector and growing and developing them.

Okay, thank you. Naturally, we'll probably have more questions. We took a lot of time doing work on film and television over the years, but we are pressed for time, but it's something—

Chair, can I just say one more thing? Apologies. Obviously, we've got our engagement event next Thursday, which I think yourself and committee members have been invited to. So, that will just set out the first year of Creative Wales and what we're looking to do next year, as well. So, I'm sure you'll have more questions from that event next week, so maybe we could reconvene after that.

Well, maybe so, but whether the timetables allow us with elections running closer to us is another question altogether.

Mae cwestiynau nawr gyda ni gan Mick Antoniw. Diolch, Mick.

We now have some questions from Mick Antoniw. Thank you, Mick.

Thank you. Just a few questions, Minister, around the creative industries and around music. One of the issues that we've been exploring on a very practical basis is the availability of facilities, and particularly the availability of quality studio space, which really goes to the core of production and capacity. I was really just wondering about what the Welsh Government's specific plans are, bearing in mind how important this is to the sector, and I know you've commented on this in the past, saying you want to expand it. I wonder, perhaps, if you could just update us on where we are on those thoughts and on those plans.

Well, obviously, capacity of studio space is essential for the development of all kinds of artistic activities, and there's a huge demand across the globe for new content. So, we are continuing to explore options. I can't, at the moment, give you any further information, but I'll turn to Gerwyn again, because, obviously, Creative Wales is very much involved with this activity, if he can indicate any further developments. Gerwyn.

Diolch, Chair. Thank you, Deputy Minister. Yes, there is a huge opportunity for the development of studio space, not just in Wales, in the UK. It's a bit of a competitive position at the moment. As everyone will know, in lockdown, everybody has watched most of the shows on Netflix et cetera, so there's a huge drive for new content across the globe at the moment. We've got some active discussions around the expansion of studios in Wales, but again I don't want it just to be south-east focused; we've got conversations happening in north Wales and potentially down in south-west Wales as well about smaller, bespoke facilities, so we increase the impact further than the south-east region. But there's definitely an opportunity and a market need for new studio space in Wales, and we're in active conversations about a number of opportunities at the moment because if we don't, they will be building them elsewhere in the UK and we'll lose that opportunity to keep the growth. 

11:20

If I can, perhaps, follow on from what you've said, obviously, within the next Senedd, this is an area that we really are going to want to focus on and explore, because it goes to the core, doesn't it, of the regeneration of parts of our industry. Will it be the intention to try to set out some sort of strategy or plan or update? How will you proceed when we start, say, the next Senedd, so that we can actually start exploring and looking at this issue and the support and how it is working, and so on?

Absolutely, yes, there's definitely an ambition, as I said, to grow our studio infrastructure in Wales. We're working with our partners in the British Film Commission, the BFC, if you're aware of that organisation. They've just been awarded £5 million from the UK Government to look at the supply and demand issues around studios across the UK. They've also got some money to help developers with feasibility reporting, planning, et cetera, so we're working with them to ensure as much of that £5 million is spent in Wales at the moment. And, as I say, we're actively looking at a number of opportunities at the moment, and we don't want just opportunities in the south-east. But we have to move quickly on this as well. This opportunity, I think, probably has a window of the next two years, because there will be so many developments that the supply and demand issue will have gone away. So, we need to move pretty quickly in Wales to make sure that we get the right studio infrastructure quickly. 

As a quick example, I don't know if you're aware of the Strength in Places bid being led by Cardiff University at the moment, which is due for a decision next month. Within that, we've encouraged Great Point Media to be a part of that bid, and if it's successful, money will be awarded to them to develop a virtual production facility at the Great Point Media Seren Stiwdios, because that's where it's moving. We need not just to build empty warehouses where they can film anymore, we have to have certain unique selling points. So, we're looking at what USPs Wales can have within any new studio development, because we don't want just to be competing with all the investments that are happening around the UK; we want to give Wales a number of USPs, and virtual production is where it's at. I don't know if anyone has watched The Mandalorian over lockdown. That was $15 million per episode, all shot virtually. So, we need to be in that space, that whatever we invest in is futureproofed for what the industry needs for the next 10, 15 years. So, definitely, we'll come back with an idea of how we can deliver that in Wales. 

I think some of us will look forward to exploring that in the not-too-distant future. If I can go back to the Minister, and just go on to another area, then, which is in terms of support for journalism. Of course, we've explored this very complex area in terms of the independence of the media but also the role it plays, its importance within our democratic institutions and in Welsh life. And you have indicated in the past, or more recently, that the Government was looking at the idea of how it might support, for example, English language news journalism, possibly the issue of some form of funding. I wonder if you're able to bring any form of update to us on that again. I know this is an area we'll obviously want to explore in future months, but just where we are at the moment. 

Well, I'm pleased to say that discussions at the highest level between Ministers have, in fact, taken place on this very issue, and I will indicate my preference, which is part of the options being discussed, is for something on the Golwg model for the Welsh language. I've always felt that it was not appropriate that there was—because I look at Wales as an officially bilingual country, and therefore we should be funding equally. And the need for effective English language journalism in Wales stands alongside the need for similar provision in the Welsh language. I think the Golwg model, where the Welsh Books Council are the arm's-length body, independent funders, ensures the funding is properly distributed. I would like to see a similar system made available for English language news journalism. There have been discussions, as you must be aware, with the Senedd Commission, on whether they would be interested in supporting or in housing an opportunity for better reportage—I might as well say that—of what goes on in our democratic activities in the Senedd, because that is an important part of our democracy. So, I am optimistic—I'm certain—that this issue is to be taken forward, on whichever model is to be preferred. The important thing here is that we have an arm's-length relationship. Offers have been made by some of the commercial reporting organisations, but I would prefer this to have a public sector distribution mechanism to enable independence from either commercial pressures or, indeed, God forbid, political pressures.

11:25

I think we're really looking forward to exploring that in the future, because I think that is a very, very important and quite exciting initiative.

Because of time, if I can move on to the final area I just wanted to talk about. We've obviously had quite a lot of quite detailed and complex discussions around the issue of broadcasting policy, and we're aware of many of the conundrums and some of the conflicts and contradictions that exist within that whole area at the moment, and, of course, we've been preparing our own report. But I'm just wondering in terms of broadcasting policy what your current thinking is, what you think have been the main areas of change that you've been able to initiate, really, over the past few years within this particular area, particularly, I suppose, in terms of increasing the Welsh voice, the Welsh influence within broadcasting policy.

The position of the Welsh Government, and, indeed, my own position, remains that it wouldn't be appropriate to devolve one aspect of broadcasting away from other cultural activities, and, indeed, the whole plethora of broadcasting platforms that currently exist. That is still our position. But during the time I've been working at this job, I am increasingly aware of the importance of having good Welsh representation at the UK level. We have now a memorandum of understanding with Ofcom and the UK Government on the appointment of an Ofcom board member; we are currently exploring ways of strengthening that memorandum of understanding. And Creative Wales here again provides an opportunity for four-nation working. One thing I have learnt from doing this work is the importance of four-nation working, and I'm grateful to my English colleague at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Nigel Huddleston, for his strong support to four-nations working. The First Minister, of course, operates a similar relationship now, fairly consistently, with the First Ministers of Northern Ireland and Scotland and with senior Ministers in the UK Cabinet, because England doesn't yet have proper devolution.

We look forward to that development and we'll undoubtedly explore that in the next Senedd. That brings my questions to an end, Chair.

Diolch, Mick Antoniw. Yn sicr, bydd yna ddim pwyllgor arall inni drafod ein hadroddiad ar ddatganoli darlledu, ond mae'r adroddiad mas heddiw, Ddirprwy Weinidog, felly efallai y byddwch chi eisiau cymryd cipolwg ar gynnwys hynny. Ac hefyd, jest cyn gorffen, roeddwn i eisiau dweud, fel Cadeirydd y pwyllgor, diolch ichi am eich cyfraniad i fywyd cyhoeddus. Dwi ddim yn siŵr fy mod i'n gallu ei ddweud e'n well na David Melding, ond diolch ichi am eich holl waith yn y Llywodraeth, ac hefyd cyn hynny, wrth gwrs. Dwi ddim eisiau mynd dros hen hanes, ond diolch ichi am eich cyfraniad i fywyd cyhoeddus. Rydyn ni'n gwerthfawrogi hynny. A diolch i bawb arall hefyd am eich cyfraniadau chi y bore yma. Felly, os nad oes yna unrhyw beth i'w ychwanegu, rydyn ni'n mynd i symud ymlaen nawr. Diolch yn fawr ichi am ddod atom.

Thank you, Mick Antoniw. We will have no further committee meetings to discuss our report on the devolution of broadcasting, but we have published our report today, Deputy Minister, so you may want to have a look of that. And also just before we conclude, I wanted to say, as committee Chair, thank you very much for your contribution to public life. I'm not sure I can put it better than David Melding did, but thank you very much for all your work within Government and prior to that, of course. We don't want to go over old stories here, but thank you very much for your contribution to public life. We very much appreciate that. And thank you to everyone else for your contributions this morning. So, if there's nothing to add, we'll move on. Thank you very much for joining us this morning.

11:30

Rydych chi'n garedig iawn, Bethan. Diolch yn fawr.

You're very kind, Bethan. Thank you. 

3. Papurau i'w nodi
3. Papers to note

Eitem 3 ar yr agenda yw papurau i'w nodi. Mae yna ohebiaeth gyda'r Dirprwy Weinidog Diwylliant, Chwaraeon a Thwristiaeth ynghylch cyllideb ddrafft Llywodraeth Cymru ar gyfer 2021-22. Dyna'r unig ohebiaeth sydd gyda ni. Fel arfer mae yna fwy. Roeddwn i'n disgwyl darllen mwy. Ydy pawb yn hapus i nodi hynny? Iawn. 

Item 3 on the agenda is papers to note. We have correspondence with the Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism on the draft Welsh Government budget for 2021-22. That's the only correspondence this morning. We usually have more. Is everyone content to note? Okay. 

4. Cynnig o dan Reol Sefydlog 17.42 i benderfynu gwahardd y cyhoedd o weddill y cyfarfod
4. Motion under Standing Order 17.42 to resolve to exclude the public from the meeting for the remainder of the meeting

Cynnig:

bod y pwyllgor yn penderfynu gwahardd y cyhoedd o weddill y cyfarfod yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.42(vi).

Motion:

that the committee resolves to exclude the public from the remainder of the meeting in accordance with Standing Order 17.42(vi).

Cynigiwyd y cynnig.

Motion moved.

Rydyn ni'n symud ymlaen, wedyn, at eitem 4, cynnig o dan Reol Sefydlog 17.42 i wahardd y cyhoedd o weddill y cyfarfod. Pawb yn hapus ac yn llawen? Grêt. Diolch yn fawr iawn ichi. 

We'll move on to item 4, a motion under Standing Order 17.42 to resolve to exclude the public. Everyone content? Excellent. Thank you very much.

Derbyniwyd y cynnig.

Daeth rhan gyhoeddus y cyfarfod i ben am 11:31.

Motion agreed.

The public part of the meeting ended at 11:31.