With the noise being made about how one of MOSI in Manchester, the National Railway Museum in York or the Media Museum in Bradford would "almost certainly" be shut should the cuts continue; now is the time to visit, spend, donate, petition and see how you can help keep museums open.
If you are unaware of the situation, it boils down to increasing cuts which the Science Museum Group have been meeting. Having done all they feel possible thus far with regards to cutting staff etc, SMG director Ian Blatchford said: “We are investigating a range of options but if an additional 10% cut is made when the spending review is announced at the end of this month, there would be little choice other than to close one of our museums, since our structural (year on year) deficit would rise from £2m to £6m.” This closure would come alongside further cuts to the London based museum.
Find out more: BBC News and the interview with Ian Blatchford on Radio 4's The World at One:
I sometimes hate the whole North/South debate, but the conclusion that it's best to shut a northern museum, rather than one in an area already well covered for museums and tourist venues, feels a bit off. Not to mention MOSI's unique value as a heritage site in it's own right, being much more of a genuine industrial hub than South Kensington, York's unique status as the first national museum outside of London, and the immense cultural and tourism benefits for Bradford being UNESCO's City of Film and hosting the National Media Museum. The benefits these three sites bring their communities and across a much broader area, I feel, outweigh the value of a site in London. No offense to London, the Science Museum there is sterling, but the entire loss of one of the northern museums would have far greater impact than say, downsizing London and spreading some of the collection out.
There are three petitions for the three venues/against the proposal overall:
As well as signing online though, Go And Visit. Currently all free to enter due to their national museum status, it's a great free day out for all the family, or without the family as then you can have fun without the kids around. Visitor numbers and secondary spending are key, so visit, get a cup of tea, and try to help keep these venues open.
Webcomic and occasional blog about the heritage sector.
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