The meeting with John Griffiths covered the impact museums could have on education and poverty

MA meets with Welsh culture minister

Geraldine Kendall, 18.12.2013
Discussion covers social impacts of museums
The Museums Association (MA) president David Anderson and director Mark Taylor met with the Welsh culture minister John Griffiths last week to discuss issues affecting the Welsh museum sector.

The meeting covered a range of topics, including the difficulties museums in Wales, particularly local authority museums, are facing as a result of budget cuts, as well as the progress of Wales’ national museums strategy and need for a new strategy in 2015.

Griffiths spoke about the recent report by Dai Smith into the relationship between arts in education and the Welsh government’s imminent response to its recommendations. The report found that culture could help drive up general education standards in schools.

The minister also discussed the importance of an impending report commissioned by the government on the role that culture and heritage organisations can play in tackling poverty.

Taylor and Anderson outlined the work the MA has been undertaking in this area, including the Museums Change Lives initiative, as well as their plans and priorities for the next MA conference, which will take place in Cardiff in 2014.

Taylor said: “The Welsh government puts a high priority on issues around inclusion, poverty and learning and has always been supportive of the role museums can play in contributing to these agendas. 

“It was no surprise therefore that the minister was very interested in some of the MA’s latest in initiatives, particularly Museums Change Lives.”