AS2015: Spending boost for Manchester museums
Grants of £300,000 to restore First World War hangars in Ellesmere Port, £9m a year to cover running costs at the new £110m Factory theatre in Manchester and a new South Asia gallery in conjunction with the British Museum, also in Manchester, were among the culture media and sports announcements in this year’s Autumn Statement.
The Hooton Park Trust was formed in 2000 to preserve the hangars at the former RAF airfield in west Cheshire for future generations. One hangar has been restored and the money will be used to restore the roof on another.
The government repeated its pledge to put £78m into the Factory Manchester, at the old Granada Studios being redeveloped by Allied London, plus £9m a year in revenue funding starting in 2018/19.
There was a repeat announcement of £2.5m already earmarked for the special exhibitions gallery at Museum of Science & Industry in Manchester and £5m for a new South Asia Gallery at Manchester Museum, part of the University of Manchester.
David Fleming, director of National Museums Liverpool, said: “We are aware from the Chancellor’s statement that the Department for Culture Media & Sport – from which National Museums Liverpool receives its funding – has had its core administration budget cut by 20%, as part of the Comprehensive Spending Review. The Chancellor also said that he would be ‘increasing the cash that will go to the Arts Council, our national museums and galleries’. As yet, we do not have details of how these announcements will in turn affect NML.”
There will be support for the North of England to host the cycling Road World Championships and 2021 Rugby League World Cup.
Nationally, the government said it will explore with museum bosses a new tax relief for museums and galleries.