New funding for the National Botanic Garden of Wales, in Carmarthenshire, was announced today by the Welsh Assembly Government.
The garden will receive £700,000 in revenue support for the 2011-12 financial year, subject to a number of agreed conditions and an additional £100,000 single payment.
An independent review by PriceWaterhouseCoopers ruled all major botanic gardens need subsidy and that proportionally, per visitor, Kew and Edinburgh receive far more than the Welsh garden.
The report also found it is only at this level of subsidy that the garden can currently develop a sustainable business plan.
Following the review Heritage Minister Alun Ffred Jones said the assembly government would provide £700,000 for the next financial year and an additional one-off £100,000 to maintain and improve its facilities.
The funding will replace the current three-year agreement worth £1.9m, which ends next month.
Making the announcement Mr. Jones said the National Botanic Garden had made a vital contribution to tourism, science and education, as well as the economy of south west Wales:
“This level of funding, as has been recommended by the recent independent review, will help the gardens to develop further as a scientific centre of excellence, a showcase for sustainability, and as a visitor attraction.
“Moving forward, our funding will depend on the garden producing a sustainable business plan and on it meeting a range of challenging targets.
“Officials at the garden will have to meet a variety of targets, likely to include the development of a new capital management and major maintenance plan, a review of international scientific research opportunities and an extension of its education outreach programme.”