New director to take Bucks museum to trust status

Richard de Peyer will take up post on 1 April
Profile image for Geraldine Kendall Adams
Geraldine Kendall Adams
Buckinghamshire County Museum has appointed a new director, Richard de Peyer, ahead of its planned move to charitable trust status later this year.

Bucks County Council has been considering putting the museum into trust for some time to allow it greater scope to raise funds. 

A council spokesman said: “As an independent charity the county museum would be able to raise funds from grant-making sources currently not available to local authorities.”

The council has made savings of around £85m in the past four years and is planning to reduce its spending by a further £27.8m over the next three years.

The museum and archive have been allocated £2m funding by the council this year.

Martin Phillips, cabinet member for community engagement, said the local authority would continue to be the major funder of the museum for the foreseeable future.

De Peyer is currently manager of Wycombe Museum, which he previously helped to become a charitable trust.

De Peyer said: “'The move to trust status later this year will have huge benefits for local involvement and activity, and it will offer genuine cost savings at a time of stringency - a tough agenda, but one I feel confident we can achieve.

“The different environment at the County Museum will allow me to focus on developing strategic plans and supporting the new trustees in partnership with a growing private funding contribution.”

The museum is currently recruiting trustees to form a board of between seven and 10 members.

De Peyer said the trust’s main aims would be working more closely with local communities, safeguarding heritage and securing the long term future of the museum service at a time of austerity.

He said the trust would also explore opportunities to work with partners such as Bucks Archaeological Society, amateur historians and other museums in the region.

De Peyer said: “A key initiative will explore the potential for a planned new Museum Resource Centre development at Halton, but we can look at new friendships and informal linkages too.”

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