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Report cover showing athlete with Union Jack flag

UK Sport: Supporting elite athletes

“Supported by lottery money, British athletes delivered some outstanding performances at the Olympics and Paralympics in Athens last summer. Looking ahead to Beijing in 2008, UK Sport needs to take action now to strengthen its management of its World Class Performance Programme so that it gets the most from its money in what are expected to the most competitive Games ever.

“In particular, UK Sport should identify the factors that helped certain sports perform well in Athens and the barriers to success in others that did less well, so that the lessons can be acted upon promptly. After the Athens Games, it is in a position to review which of its funded sports have delivered, and remain capable of delivering, world class performance.”

Published:
27 Jan 2005
Cover of report showing picture of a beach

VisitBritain: Bringing visitors to Britain

“The tourist industry is a significant income-earner and employer in Great Britain. VisitBritain deserves much credit for the support it provides through professional and well executed marketing activities which clearly generate high returns. However, VisitBritain now needs to focus even more on emerging markets where Great Britain can be energetically promoted as a most attractive tourist destination.”

Published:
12 Nov 2004
Cover of report showing someone looking at text on a microfiche reader

The British Library – Providing services beyond the Reading Rooms

” The Library is providing an important range of services beyond its reading rooms, which are generally of a high quality. It deserves much credit for responding well to the increased competition to its document supply services and for the other improvements it is making to its remote services.

Digitisation has proved to be popular. For example, it gives us the opportunity to virtually “turn” the pages of manuscripts such as the Lindisfarne Gospels. It is important that the Library and other organisations collaborate to exploit fully the great opportunities for providing materials of relevance to a wide range of users. In addition the Library needs to take care to ensure that access to digitised material can be sustained beyond the short to medium term.”

Published:
28 Jul 2004
Cover of report showing a boy holding a ball

Managing National Lottery Distribution Fund balances

“Balances held in the National Lottery Distribution Fund are not delivering the intended benefits in the community. Although the balances have started to fall, there is scope to reduce them further and those distributors with the largest balances, in particular the Heritage Lottery Fund and the New Opportunities Fund, can make the biggest contribution. However the Department for Culture, Media and Sport also has a role in helping distributors to manage effectively the opportunities and risks in seeking to reduce balances.”

Published:
21 Jul 2004
Cover of Royal parks report

The Royal Parks – An Executive Agency

“The Agency looks after some 5,000 acres of green space in London and there is much to be praised in the work it does. This report identifies ways in which the Agency can sharpen up the management of the Parks. The Parks are a valued feature of London life, and it is important to learn from, and contribute to, all that is happening in parks in the rest of the country and indeed the rest of the world.”

Published:
2 Apr 2004
Cover of NESTA REPORT

The National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts

“In two out of three programmes NESTA has done well to generate applications and it deserves credit for setting up sound systems for selecting and managing its projects. However, NESTA does need to achieve a more equitable regional distribution of funds, to broaden the reach of the Fellowship Programme, and to improve measurement of its own operational efficiency.

“There are also important lessons to be learned about funding public bodies through an endowment, particularly the management of risks associated with interest rate changes and the endowment declining in real terms.”

Published:
25 Feb 2004
Cover of Income generated by Museums and Galleries

Income generated by the Museums and Galleries

“Museums and galleries are already engaged in a variety of income generating activities, and they see real potential for growth in new and existing areas. By developing the appropriate skills and culture they will be better placed to improve on their existing efforts and maximise the potential of new activities such as the provision of on-line services and products. Such increases in self-generated income will allow museums and galleries to both achieve their missions and serve the public even better.”

Published:
30 Jan 2004
Report cover showing Wembley stadium

The English National Stadium Project at Wembley

“The road to Wembley has not been easy and the Department found itself in a difficult position in 2001. I welcome the action that has since been taken to review the project and protect the public interest. Ultimately protection of the public interest will depend on the project as a whole being a success so it is vital that the Department and Sport England stay in close touch with the project as it progresses and act promptly if they have any concerns.”

Published:
6 Jun 2003
Report cover showing Shakespeare's Globe Theatre

Progress on 15 Major Capital Projects Funded by Arts Council England

“It is pleasing that most of the 15 projects are now delivering the intended benefits to the public. But it is disappointing that two have had to close and that on most the construction work did not go to plan, with delays and cost overruns which resulted in 10 projects needing additional lottery funding. It is important that, in taking forward its new capital programme, the Arts Council monitors the effectiveness of the measures it has introduced to reduce the likelihood of similar problems in the future. Where things do go wrong the Arts Council should be prepared to stop funding and at all times it must ensure that lottery funds are protected so that it is in a position to recover its money in the event of projects failing.”

Published:
2 May 2003