Monday, November 24, 2014

Imperial War Musueum petition...

I don't normally put this kind of stuff up as we don't like to discus politics or women in the mess, but this is of genuine interest to most of us... 

"One hundred years after the outbreak of the First World War, the Imperial War Museum is under threat.

The Museum is facing an annual deficit of £4m because of cuts in government funding.

It has drawn up proposals to:

•   close its unique library and dispose of the majority of its collection
•   cut important education services
•   cut 60-80 jobs
•   close the widely emulated ‘Explore History’ facility in London.

The Museum’s library gives ordinary people access to research materials on all aspects of British and Commonwealth involvement in conflict since 1914".

The petition requests a review/reverse of the governments funding for the museum...

Sign the petition here [clicky]

Personally I wonder how much help it would be to also start charging for entrance....  it's a superb museum, and entry is currently free (except  to any special exhibitions)

22 comments:

  1. As someone who's worked for IWM I'll note that they do charge for 3 out of their 5 branches (Duxford, HMS Belfast and the Churchill War Rooms), it is only IWMN in Manchester and the London branch while don't. They don't charge because of their demographic (can't afford to visit), and because of presedent. If they were to alter them to a state of charging then they would almost certainly suffer a significant loss of visitor numbers, and this figure is used to justify the funding they receive - simplistically fewer visitors must mean they are reaching fewer people and so are less useful and require less funding. Double-edged obviously.

    Interestingly the idea that you will receive more visitors if you go the opposite way from a charging museum to a free one was proved incorrect; when most national museums went from charging to free the visitor numbers barely changed.

    Signed the petition.

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    1. Rick - "the idea that you will receive more visitors if you go the opposite way from a charging museum to a free one was proved incorrect"; why does this sound so much like the same argument the anti smoking lobby put about when we were deciding whether to ban smoking in pubs... they swore blind it would be the making of pubs, and that within months swarms of new punters would turn up... and did they? Did they heck as like.... :o)

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  2. I've signed too. When I see what government wastes on other stuff!

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    1. Cheers Legatus - it's chicken feed really, when you consider the incalculable value of the collection.... still... they will do whatever they damn well please, and will probably ignore the petition.. :o)

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  3. Signed as "foreigner" for whom the IWM is a tourist draw.

    I think all of our federally funded museums were spun off into crown corporations and now charge. Again most if not all have one free evening per week which I frequently use since our war museum is on my walk home form work.

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    1. Cheers Pat - plenty of your country men their the day I went... :o)

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  4. It's typical of the cockeyed approach of just about any local or central government aproach to a budget problem. 'Cultural Services' in their many forms are usually considered a soft target because they barely affect votes. It's a very poor second compared to the NHS or social care. The real danger here is that if you have to mothball anything (and thereby have to keep it warm and dry in (probably expensive) accommodation somewhere), then the next bright idea from some paper shuffler is to sell off the collection(s)/records and then they're gone forever.
    O.K., soapbox back in cupboard . . . .

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    1. Gary - you are so right.... add in to the mix that war museums are clearly a trendy lefty target and they are even more of a soft target.....

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  5. SIGNED AND SET TO MY FACEBOOK FRIENDS

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  6. Done, my children and I looked for and 'found' my great grandfather last year, we are going to Flanders in 2017, 100 years after he died. All of this started at the IWM in Waterloo searching the CWGC records.
    Alternatively HMG could cut funding and children could remain glued to their X Boxes.

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    1. Nigel J - that's a cracking comment - many thanks..

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    1. Cheers Stokes- appreciated - and happy holidays, as you colonials like to say.. :o)

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    1. Thanks Ray - spread the word round the Rejects - you guys get far more hits on your blogs than I do.. :o)

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  9. The most likely one will be to cut the paid staff and replace them with volunteers as this seems to be the current trend in how museums cope with the funding cuts. My wife currently works in one and this is something they have been slowly doing over the last year. The other approach they have been taking is to try and replace the more expensive members of staff with cheaper ones straight out of university

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    1. Paul - I think you're right.. seems to be the model for most western industries and institutions... schools, hospitals, you name it...

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  10. Thanks for the heads up on this Steve, I will cross post this on my page to add some more noise.

    Cheers
    Jonathan

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  11. I have signed too because I am heartily sick and tired of being told by millionaires I must make do with less while they and their filthy rich chums wallow in cash! Sorry to be political but I'm becoming a revolutionary I think as I get older!

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  12. Signed as a proud Aussie who has visited this Museum five times in the past two decades. Its historic contents are amazing and irreplaceable. I am looking forward to visit number six early next year to introduce it to my teenage son and show him the privileges he is inheriting because of the sacrifices of so many for so long.

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  13. Signed and a contribution made. This is actually shameful...politicians lined up to pay respects at the Centenary of the Great War full of platitudes and humility and then they do this!

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