To mark 18 months of Culture Collective activity, Tom Arthur MSP, Minister for Public Finance, Planning, and Community Wealth, shared his thoughts on the impact of the work of the network so far. His warm remarks – written to welcome attendees to the Culture Collective Showcase, are shared here.

“Good morning, and on behalf of the Scottish Government, welcome to today’s showcase. I am delighted to be able to speak to you as you celebrate the first eighteen months of the Culture Collective programme.

As Minister for Public Finance, Planning, and Community Wealth, I see first-hand the benefits that culture and creativity bring to people across Scotland. Cultural participation can inspire, enrich and empower us.

As set out in our Culture Strategy for Scotland, we want everyone – no matter who you are or where you live – to be able to experience the transformative potential of culture.

This doesn’t just apply to individuals, but also to communities and neighbourhoods all over the country.

Our Government’s vision is for Scotland to be a place where the economic, physical, and social needs of all communities are addressed; and where all places are sustainable and promote wellbeing.

Culture and creativity are central to this – and I am grateful to each of you here today, and the ongoing work of your Culture Collective projects, for helping us move closer to that shared vision”.