£4m Government Indemnity payout for Zoffany

January 4 2017

Image of £4m Government Indemnity payout for Zoffany

Picture: TAN

Martin Bailey in The Art Newspaper reports that the UK government will have to pay out £4m to the owners of a painting by Zoffany (above) that was destroyed in the tragic fire at Clandon Park. The payout will be made directly by the Treasury, as the picture (on loan from a private collection) was covered by the Government Indemnity scheme. This allows museums to cover the risk of damage or loss to a painting, without paying an insurance premium. The government - ie, taxpayers - assumes all the risk. The scheme is vital for exhibitions and loans in the UK. The fact that the payout is, as TAN reports, the highest ever made, tells us a great deal about the success of the scheme. For £4m is not really a significant sum, in relation to all the works of art that have been covered over the years. 

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