Scottish Screen approves £50,000 for controversial parliament film
SCOTTISH Screen has approved £50,000 to fund a controversial film documenting the construction of the new Scottish Parliament building.
The payment, which comes from lottery funds, will go towards the 820,000 documentary The Gathering Place, which charts the disastrous progress of the Holyrood project.
A spokeswoman for Scottish Screen confirmed the payment had been agreed at a meeting in December.
Last October, sources at BBC Scotland revealed concerns over where the 50,000 was going to come from.
At that stage, the total estimated cost of the documentary stood at 820,000 - but only 770,000 had been confirmed.
Last night, a source close to BBC Scotland said: "We are pleased this has been resolved."
The Gathering Place, which is being made by Wark Clements, the Glasgow-based media company run by Kirsty Wark and her husband, Alan Clements, has been plagued by a series of controversies.
In 1998, when the contract for the programme was awarded, the makers were accused of a conflict of interest because Wark had sat on the panel of judges that selected the winning design by the architect Enric Miralles - accusations strongly denied by the Newsnight presenter.
The film has also been hit by a series of budget increases which appear to mirror those of the Holyrood project itself.
Originally planned with a budget of 370,000, with the Scottish Arts Council and BBC Scotland sharing the costs, the latest estimate is 820,000. Scottish Screen joined as an additional funding partner.
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