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Royal Cornwall Museum to close for eight months

Royal Cornwall Museum to close for eight months

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 3:50pm 25th November 2019.

Eight people are losing their jobs as the Royal Cornwall Museum closes for eight months.

£100,000 worth of 'critical' repairs need to be carried out on the Truro building's roof.

Bosses say serious leaks are threatening to bring down a wall and damage several exhibits. The repairs are urgently required to safeguard the collections. 

They added that this period of time will also be used to reboot the public programme and modernize how the museum is run.

From the 12th January 2020 the museum will be closed to general visitors for eight months, with the exception of school visits and use of the library for researchers.

Eight people are being made redundant.

Low visitor numbers and a challenging funding climate mean that the operation of the museum now needs a new approach, according to museum bosses.

"RCM has served the people of Cornwall for over 200 years and played a leading role in protecting and safeguarding Cornish history, culture and achievement. 

"This is a role it will continue to play in the future, but as with any organisation we need to invest in our building and reset our vision for the future. This is essential as we set a course for the next 100 years."

Julie Seyler, Chair of the Museum Board

A contractor will be appointed in the New Year. 

The RCM will take this opportunity to consult with communities across Cornwall on a new vision for the Museum and how it can better serve their needs. 

"While we must carry out our responsibilities to the building and our valuable collections, our main concern today is for the 8 people who, through no fault of their own will be made redundant. 

"The museum that reopens its doors in September will be different, following a consultation to understand and meet the changing needs of visitors and to sustain the service for the future."

Alan Wallace, Museum Director

Whilst the roof is being repaired there will be a Cornwall-wide consultation to shape the future of the museum. 

Also, during this time, areas that will not be affected by the repair works will stay open, by appointment. 

For example, the library will continue to be available for the large number of people who use it for research and for weekly school visits to give local children exclusive access to the historic treasures we house.

"Cornwall Council recognises the difficult decision that the RIC Board has made and the impact this will have on staff and on loyal visitors to the museum. 

"The Royal Cornwall Museum has played a key role in sharing the story of Cornwall - our heritage, culture and accomplishments. 

"Cornwall Council is committed to supporting the RCM in the creation of a transformational plan and renewed vision and offer ensuring the Museum's future."

Cornwall Council

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