HUMZA Yousaf has said he will look at what “potential support” the Scottish Government can provide to the Aye Write book festival, which has been cancelled for 2024.

We previously told how the festival, held in Glasgow since launching in 2005, has been called off due to a lack of funding from Creative Scotland.

A number of famous faces have made an appearance at the festival, including crime writer Val McDermid, comedian Frankie Boyle and former first minister Nicola Sturgeonwho spoke out about the issue once the news broke.

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Speaking at FMQs, Tory MSP for the Glasgow region Annie Wells asked Yousaf: “Aye Write book festival which has been running in Glasgow for nearly 20 years has been cancelled this year just weeks before it was due to return after its funding bid was rejected by Creative Scotland.

“And this comes just weeks after it was revealed that the Quango initially awarded an explicit film £85,000.”

Creative Scotland previously announced it had withdrawn support for an explicit sex film which was promoted as featuring unsimulated sex, saying the project was “considerably more explicit” than first believed.  

Wells added: “Can the First Minister clarify Creative Scotland’s prioritisation process and cultural funding decisions and what steps the Scottish Government is taking to safeguard the diversity and vibrancy of Glasgow’s cultural landscape.”

The First Minister replied by describing Aye Write as a “fantastic festival” and that those who had attended its events “knows the value that it brings not just to the city but the country as a whole”.

He added that any decisions are made independently by Creative Scotland but that he would look at “what potential support the Scottish Government can provide”.

Yousaf continued: “Annie Wells is right, Aye Write is a fantastic festival and I would say it’s something of a cultural icon, an institution within our festival and cultural landscape.

“I will examine the issue and of course be happy to keep the member updated.”