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Museum of Lancashire closure date set as consortium deal talks continue

Posted on - 23rd August, 2016 - 7:46pm | Author - | Posted in - News, Politics, Preston City Centre
Museum of Lancashire appearing on Children In Need Pic: Lancashire County Council

Museum of Lancashire appearing on Children In Need Pic: Lancashire County Council

A museum in Preston is to close from September as the county council continues negotiations to secure its future.

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The Museum of Lancashire, which is being eyed by a consortium, will close to the public from Friday 30 September.

As revealed on Blog Preston during Tuesday morning a bid from a consortium to operate the museum is under discussion.

Lancashire County Council says it can no longer afford to run the museum as it looks to save millions of pounds in the next two years.

The museum, in Stanley Street, would go into a ‘care and maintenance plan’ until any transfer of the museum was complete.

Cabinet member for environment, planning and cultural services county councillor Marcus Johnstone, said: This is extremely good news for the future of these museums. There is obviously still a lot of work to do but it is very encouraging to see such robust and well-thought-through business plans.

“In an ideal world we would not have been forced into this position but as we no longer have the funding to keep these cultural resources open we can at least do a thorough job to ensure that they have a sustainable future.”

Documents submitted by council officers outline concerns about the consortium’s initial plan for the museum, saying it would still rely on the county council and city council to offer a subsidy so the museum can run.

If this deal cannot be undone then the county council looks likely to walk away from the consortium. Twelve jobs would be at risk if the museum shuts permanently.

The county council said as negotiations were under way it could not name the museums.

A petition calling for the Museum of Lancashire to be kept open has been signed by thousands of Prestonians.

Do you visit the museum? What do you think about the decision? Let us know in the comments below

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