Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Botanic Gardens Bail out: A rose by any other name

The National Botanic Garden of Wales is to receive up to £1.9m extra public money to pay off its debt.

Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones said it was a one-off grant to put the £43m garden on a sound financial footing to attract private investment.

The money it receives each year from the assembly government will rise from £150,000 to up to £550,000.

Managers of the garden at Llanarthne in Carmarthenshire welcomed it as a "monumental milestone". Two months ago, it emerged that garden managers were in talks with the assembly government to remove the debt and increase its annual grant.

Revealing the outcome of those talks, Mr Jones told AMs that the garden had met all the recovery targets it had been set.

Carmarthenshire County Council also announced that it would convert an existing £1.35m loan into a grant and provide a further package of financial support to the garden, with funding matched by the assembly government.

Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones said:

... it was vital to value our national institutions, wherever they may be in Wales. The National Botanic Garden of Wales has proved, beyond doubt, its value to the people of Carmarthenshire and beyond. It has the potential, however, to make an even more valuable contribution and...in addition to maintaining the current visitor offer there needs to be further work in attracting new and returning customers...The funding would allow the development of a range of new projects, including science and education programmes.
Miss Wagstaff says:

Value our national institutions, wherever they may be in Wales [no disrespect to North Wales and what I may have said on previous occasions].

Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones said it was a one-off grant to put the £43m garden on a sound financial footing to attract private investment [A rose by any other name would smell as sweet].

4 comments:

Percy thrower 7 February 2008 at 11:04  

Well spotted Miss W. Another one-off grant to the garden. Not that I'm begrudging them the cash, but the spin is obvious.

Valleys Mam 7 February 2008 at 16:51  

Its an excellent project and should be supported by the UK Government ,have you seen what they pump into Kew.
Trouble is where it is, too far out from Urban world and Tourist world

Dotcommentator 8 February 2008 at 01:18  

'Monumental millstone', shurely?

Anonymous 8 February 2008 at 08:57  

Plaid are tying up Labour's mess at the expence of projects which could revive the Welsh language. Plaid is doing Labour's dirty work and Labour are laughing at Plaid.

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