scrutiny

Exposed – Finally!

Posted on Updated on

Even though BBC Wales always seem proud to show their support for the nepotism that’s been going on for years at Literature Wales it seems they had no choice but to report this:

An organisation that promotes and develops reading and writing is to have its funding and responsibilities cut following a critical report.

The board of Literature Wales has been described as “lacking the skills and experience” to spend public money.

The Welsh Government-commissioned report was written by Professor Medwin Hughes.

Literature Wales said it would give the report “careful and thorough consideration.”

The findings include:

  • There was no evidence of strong governance at Literature Wales
  • A feeling among respondents that there was a culture of “entitlement”
  • Literature Wales did not contain the right composition of skills and experience to run a body spending public money
  • Its mission and goals were “unrealistic and vague”

Literature Wales was created in 2011 following a merger of various organisations and had an income of around £1.2m last year, including £717,000 from the Welsh Government via the Arts Council of Wales.

Following the publication of the report on Tuesday, the economy minister Ken Skates announced that several responsibilities will now transfer from Literature Wales to the Welsh Books Council.

They include the Wales Book of the Year award, bursaries for writers and literary events.

Literature Wales will retain control of the Ty Newydd writing centre in Llanystumdwy, Gwynedd and some events and festivals.

Mr Skates said the changes were in “response to specific needs in a specific area of activity”.

“They are not a reflection on the wider work of the arts council and my appreciation of the good work that Literature Wales has delivered in some areas,” he added.

“However, I am persuaded that these steps are needed to create a support structure for publishing and literature that is more effective and fit for purpose.”

‘Challenging and far-reaching’

A spokeswoman for Literature Wales said: “The Welsh Government’s Independent Review of Support for Publishing and Literature in Wales presents a number of recommendations which will require careful and thorough consideration.

“We look forward to reading the report in full and working with colleagues in Welsh Government, Arts Council of Wales and the Welsh Books Council to ensure that literature in all its forms continues to be accessible to a wide range of communities and individuals throughout Wales.”

A spokesman for the Arts Council of Wales, which provides most of Literature Wales’s funding, said: “This is a very substantial report that has drawn on the views of a large number of individuals and organisations.

“With some 60 recommendations, the report deserves detailed and careful consideration.

“Some of the headline recommendations are challenging and far-reaching.

“The report proposes a change of approach and we must consider whether an alternative strategy is likely to deliver better results. We expect to reach our initial conclusions when the council meets in early July.”

Since it was established in 2011, Literature Wales has awarded nearly half a million pounds in bursaries to writers and helped organise big events like the recent Dylan Thomas and Roald Dahl celebrations.

Advertisements

Shite of the Year 2016

Posted on Updated on

It’s that time of the year again. When the unelected people who give your taxpayers money to their friends and family give even more of it to even more of their friends and family and even charge you for the privilege of watching them rub their greedy little hands together. This year it seems that a number of University Professors have fallen on hard times as well as the usual suspects like Owen ‘bad boy’ Sheers, ‘Gross Writer’, ‘Horrid Henry’ and ‘Gloating Gower’.

shit

This year, in Pulp of the Year 2016 the nominees are: Philip Gross (previous parasite)Paul Henry (bursary regular – £6,425)Stephen Payne (Professor who needs the cash?), Kate Hamer (bursary score – £5,000), Thomas Morris (lives in Dublin but still got a ticket)Owen Sheers (more public cash thrown at him than any other shit writer?), Jasmine Donahaye (Cash score – £20,000+), Eluned Gramich (other public money – £1,000), Daniel G. Williams (Professor who needs more cash), Mererid Hopwood (bursary score – £6,000), Gruffudd Owen (Arts Council Trougher)Cen Williams (big jobs for the boys), Jon Gower (bursary score – £8,000), Caryl Lewis (Wales Literature Exchange)Dewi Prysor (was interesting until he made this list), Simon Brooks (bursary score – £2,003), Gruffydd Aled Williams (another hard-up Professor) and Emyr Glyn Williams.

Each category winner will receive £1,000 (even though they’d never sell that many books), and the main award winners in each language get an additional £3,000.
And the real sting in the tail… Literature Wales, that gets millions of pounds a year to promote literature even has the cheek to charge you £5 a ticket for this crap!
It truly is a great time to be part of the Welsh Taffia and Gravy Train Circus. This truly embarrassing event is also sponsored by the Arts Council, Welsh Assembly Government, Aberystwyth University, Welsh Books Council and others. Once again proving that austerity just happens to other people as far as these bastards are concerned.

Money For Nothing

Posted on Updated on

Ever been short of a few bob? Ever wondered how you’ll pay the mortgage? The gas and electric bills getting you down? Well, never fear there is an answer to your problems. It’s called the Creative Wales Awards.

Linking up with Literature Wales the Arts Council of Wales’ Creative Wales Awards are supposed to recognise the very best talent and potential of individual Welsh artists but instead they get given to someone named ‘Wynne-Rhydderch‘ – that household name once again! What a pile of shite!

Along with Samantha Wynne-Rhydderch, are Jasmine Donahaye and Mab Jones. They will get the following:

Jasmine Donahaye – £20,000

Jasmine will spend long periods of time watching animals getting slaughtered then write about it. Wow!

Samantha Wynne – Rhydderch – £14,350

Samantha, who already earns a fair crust as a teacher at Trinity Saint David University, will basically waste a year of her life looking at things that aren’t books.

Mab Jones – £20,000

Mab Jones will get paid to learn all about ‘rakugo’ – a Japanese comic storytelling form! Unlike the rest of us who have to pay to get taught.
So once again the message is clear – change your name to ‘Wynne-Rhydderch’ and get given taxpayers money! Horray!

Cash for Owen?

Posted on

After being given £8,000 for his truly terrible Wales Book of the Year, golden boy Owen Sheers is tipped to win the 2014 Dylan Thomas Prize this year as well. Nice job if you can get it eh!

Here is the Short List in full:

Eleanor Catton, The Luminaries (Granta)
Joshua Ferris, To Rise Again at a Decent Hour (Viking)
Eimear McBride, A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing (Faber & Faber)
Kseniya Melnik, Snow in May (Fourth Estate)
Kei Miller, The Cartographer Tries to Map a Way to Zion (Carcanet Press)
Owen Sheers, Mametz (National Theatre Wales)
Naomi Wood, Mrs Hemingway (Picador)

This time he could net £30,000 and pay off the mortgage on his farm perhaps?

Let’s hope Cerys Mathews doesn’t blot her copybook by listening to those who tell her to pick him!

New Troughers Announced

Posted on Updated on

This month sees yet another £81,000 of taxpayers money dished out to so-called “writers” no-one has ever heard of.  True, there are a few unpublished writers in there too (six we counted, although LW say it is eleven) but once again the vast majority of the cash is gifted to “published” writers – most, if not all, are unknown, talentless and worse still – previous bursary recipients!  Disgusting you might say? Well, we’ll agree with you.

But if this serious business of handing out taxpayers money without scrutiny wasn’t enough, Literature Wales even have the gall to announce to the world that they have awarded over £1 million in Writers’ Bursaries to their friends and family!

And out of that million quid the only “famous” writers they can come up with are: Belinda Bauer, Lloyd Jones, Daniel Morden & Gwyneth Lewis.  Yes, you’re right again, no-one outside Wales has ever heard of them.

How sad that in this, Dylan Thomas’s centenary year, LW still can’t give 100% of its financial support to new writers!

Link to who got what this year – click here.

Welcome

Posted on Updated on

gt1 copyLiterature Wales is the national organisation that is supposed to be responsible for developing and promoting literature in Wales.

It runs Wales Book of the Year, the National Poet of Wales, writing courses at Tŷ Newydd and numerous other events, most of which they charge an entry fee for.

They also get rather a large wad of taxpayers money to help them do this.

Literature Wales is supposed to represent the interests of Welsh writers in all genres and languages. It is also supposed to offer advice, support and bursaries to writers.

Literature Wales works with the support of the Arts Council of Wales and the Welsh Assembly Government. It is one of the resident organisations of the Wales Millennium Centre.

Scandal

In early 2013, the UK national press including the Daily Mail and The Telegraph revealed some astonishing facts and figures about how literature is run in Wales.

‘In the past five years the Welsh Books Council and Literature Wales have received more than £42m from the Welsh Assembly and Arts Council Wales, which in turn receive their funding from Westminster.

Welsh authors can apply for grants of up to £10,000 to work on any kind of book, and they keep the money even if their work is never published.’

– By Gordon Rayner, Chief Reporter, Telegraph, 01 Jan 2013

The reports were critical of the cost to British taxpayers, with the Daily Mail stating that the money went to pay for Welsh books that only sold ‘a handful of copies’.

Makes you wonder where all those millions go doesn’t it? Some would even say that this level of funding is in dire need of some serious scrutiny.

We have done a bit of digging around and found that the same names seem to crop up time and time again. It seems taxpayers money is being given to a small, select group of people, in the form of bursaries, prizes, judging and appearance fees, year after year after year.

So please read on and be disgusted. Oh yes, and maybe tell your friends about us too. Just send them this link:

https://literaturewales.wordpress.com/