Icon briefs MP on Coronavirus challenges to conservation and freelancers

Icon discusses Coronavirus impacts with Alex Sobel MP

01 Mar 2021

Last Wednesday 24 February, Icon Chief Executive Sara Crofts participated in a roundtable with the Shadow Minister for Tourism & Heritage, Alex Sobel MP to discuss the impact of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) on the heritage sector.

The roundtable was organised by the Heritage Alliance and presented an opportunity for member organisations to highlight concerns and outline the ways that heritage can support wider recovery from the pandemic.

During the roundtable, Sara introduced the MP to conservation, the work of conservators and Icon’s role within the sector as a professional body. She described the fragile ecosystem of the commercial conservation sector, drawing attention to the many freelancers and self-employed conservators who have missed out on financial support for business due to ineligibility for key schemes. 

Following the event, Sara wrote to Sobel, thanking him for his interest and commitment to heritage and reiterating Icon’s concerns and recommendations for recovery.

Icon’s letter called for future grant schemes “to understand and address the barriers inadvertently built into post-Covid funding to offer better support to microbusinesses.” Sara also restated Icon’s backing for the establishment of a freelance commission to support the government in better understanding the challenges faced by cultural and creative freelancers.

Icon looks forward to supporting Mr Sobel's work in preparing a manifesto for heritage ahead of the next general election. 

Read the full letter and briefing.

Find out more about Icon's Coronavirus policy activities. 


Image: Creative Commons