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LONDON STILL TOP OF LOTTERY LIST

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Lottery money distribution is still characterised by vast inequalities, with London taking a much bigger slice of t...
Lottery money distribution is still characterised by vast inequalities, with London taking a much bigger slice of the funding than any other UK region.

The capital received nearly£173 per head in Lottery cash between 1995 and 1998, compared with a UK-wide figure of just£87, according to the latest edition of Lottery Monitor.

Worst off is the East Midlands, which received less than£53 per head. But the latest figures show that the difference between London and the rest of the UK is decreasing, albeit slowly, with the capital's lion share of Lottery funding largely attributable to awards made in the three years before 1998.

Lottery Monitor publisher Alasdair Buchan also points out that London itself contains some of the biggest distributional inequalities. The top four UK areas are in central London, but there are also 13 London boroughs in the bottom half of the funding table.

Westminster City Council again stands out, with more than£1,800 per resident over the 1995-98 period, compared to just£3.90 per resident in North East Derbyshire.

For the first time, four council areas received no Lottery funds in 1998: Christchurch BC, Mole Valley DC, Isles of Scilly Council and Tamworth BC. A total of 198 areas received less than 10 awards each.

One reason was that in 1998 the 11 Lottery boards only gave out only 48% of the amount they distributed in 1997.

Board members insisted they had to hold back funds while they developed new strategic policies demanded by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport.

A DCMS spokesman said the government was 'keen that everyone has equal access to Lottery funds, but that does not necessarily mean each town and each region gets the same'.

'No one has ever pretended you can get an equal balance for every town and every region,' he said.

Lottery Monitor, tel: 01273 702 504, e-mail: lottery.monitor@virgin.net

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