Culture minister Ed Vaizey leaves the government
Ed Vaizey, the longest serving arts minister in British political history, has left the government following Theresa May’s appointment as prime minister.
Vaizey confirmed the news on Twitter and his departure comes as May announced Karen Bradley had been appointed new culture secretary earlier this month.
Vaizey has been replaced by Matt Hancock. Vaizey said Hancock was a “brilliant appointment” and would “strongly support arts”.
Writing on Twitter, Vaizey said:
Looking forward to supporting the government from the backbenches #vexit
— Ed Vaizey (@edvaizey) July 15, 2016
Vaizey was named longest serving arts minister in January this year, beating a previous record set by Labour’s Jennie Lee.
At the time, Vaizey said: “This Conservative government really understands the importance of the arts – evident by the recent generous budget settlement in the spending review. I am massively optimistic that our arts and culture – the envy of the world – will continue to thrive and do fantastic things,”
Tributes have been paid to Vaizey and his support of the arts on Twitter.
The National Theatre said:
Huge thanks to @edvaizey, who as the UK’s longest serving arts minister has been a tireless advocate for culture and the arts.
— National Theatre (@NationalTheatre) July 16, 2016
Barbican managing director Nicholas Kenyon wrote:
— Nicholas Kenyon (@NickRKenyon) July 16, 2016
Alex Beard, Royal Opera House chief executive, commented:
— Alex Beard (@AlexBeardROH) July 16, 2016
Stella Duffy wrote:
@edvaizey v sorry. Sincerely hope whoever replaces you fully understands the vital importance of real grassroots engagement with arts.
— Stella Duffy (@stellduffy) July 15, 2016
Actor Tanya Moodie wrote:
— Tanya Moodie (@tanyamoodie) July 15, 2016
The Cultural Learning Alliance wrote:
.@edvaizey is leaving the culture brief. Thanks for everything you did to champion us Ed. You’ll be much missed.
— CLA (@CultureLearning) July 15, 2016
Hancock also tweeted about becoming culture minister and said he wanted to make the UK the “cultural centre” of the world.
Delighted to be Minister of State for Digital & Culture. Energised to take up the challenge to make UK tech & cultural centre of the world
— Matt Hancock (@MattHancockMP) July 15, 2016
We need your help…
When you subscribe to The Stage, you’re investing in our journalism. And our journalism is invested in supporting theatre and the performing arts.
The Stage is a family business, operated by the same family since we were founded in 1880. We do not receive government funding. We are not owned by a large corporation. Our editorial is not dictated by ticket sales.
We are fully independent, but this means we rely on revenue from readers to survive.
Help us continue to report on great work across the UK, champion new talent and keep up our investigative journalism that holds the powerful to account. Your subscription helps ensure our journalism can continue.