NEW MINISTER FOR DCAL

Gregory Campbell, MP, MLA has been appointed Minister for Culture, Arts and Leisure in the Northern Ireland Executive

Representing the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) he was elected a Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) in June 1998 and an MP for the East Londonderry constituency in 2001

Speaking about his new Ministerial role, Gregory Campbell said: “The Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL) has such a diverse portfolio ranging from arts to sport and museums to languages. I welcome the opportunity to be involved in each and every aspect of it and to lead the Department through the challenges ahead.

“The Department has a challenging programme of work which has the potential to make a real impact on the economic and cultural life of Northern Ireland. There is an ambitious capital programme which will see the renewal of the Arts infrastructure in Belfast and Londonderry; I will be launching a new strategy for sport; I want to maximise the benefits presented by the 2012 Olympic Games and I will be looking in particular how DCAL can support the creative industries and contribute to tourism.”

The Minister continued: “Northern Ireland is a small country which has produced some of the best sporting talent in the United Kingdom. Sport has a positive influence on our society, in particular by providing a healthy outlet for our young people and giving them a sense of achievement and self worth.”

The Minister also commented on the talent of Northern Ireland people who are helping to build a more dynamic and creative economy.

He concluded: “Arts and Culture make a vital contribution to our quality of life as well as attracting inward investment and tourism. Investment in arts and culture also supports local jobs and stimulates consumer spending.

“This opportunity has been presented to me and I intend to fulfil my obligations as Minister in the provision of a sporting, cultural, artistic Northern Ireland which we can all be proud of.

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