Ken Skates at the Museums Association Conference and Exhibition in Cardiff earlier this month

Welsh government commissions cuts survey

Gareth Harris, 27.10.2014
Review to look at impact of cuts on local authority museums in Wales
The Welsh government has commissioned a review examining the impact of spending cuts on local authority-funded museums across Wales.

The review will be undertaken by a panel comprising Dr Haydn Edwards, vice president of Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales; Professor Gaynor Kavanagh, dean of Cardiff School of Art and Design; Adrian Babbidge, director of the heritage consultancy Egeria, and a representative from the Welsh Local Government Association.

The panel will deliver its findings next spring.

Ken Skates, deputy minister for culture, sport and tourism, said in a statement that local museums are especially at risk of closure in the current economic climate because they are among non-statutory services provided by local authorities.

He added: “I am keen to identify ways of ensuring that museum services continue to be provided at a local level.”

The panel has been asked to consider whether “alternative service delivery models” would provide more efficient and effective museum services. New governance models adopted by local authorities in recent years include switching to trust status, a move designed to ease financial pressures.

“The review will also consider existing collaborations between local museums, People’s Collection Wales [an online resource with documents and videos about Welsh heritage] and Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales, [in order] to increase access to collections, share knowledge and promote museums as places to visit,” said Skates.

Examples of best practice and areas of concern will also be highlighted in the Welsh government report.

The Federation of Museums and Art Galleries of Wales told the BBC that it welcomed the review.

The Museums Association's annual cuts survey will be published next month


Comments

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Jonathan Gammond
MA Member
Access & Interpretation Officer, Wrexham County Borough Museum
04.12.2014, 21:29
The expert panel who are leading the review are meeting at Wrexham Museum on Tuesday, December 8th. I have submitted a series of questions about how the review is going to be undertaken. I hope to be able to share the answers as soon as possible.
David Fleming
MA Member
Director, National Museums Liverpool
27.10.2014, 17:03
This looks like a good idea. Let's see the extent of the impact of funding cuts. England next?