Sheffield museums trust is forced to make job cuts

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MUSEUMS Sheffield is making a ‘small number’ of redundancies due to a £200,000 funding cut.

But today the organisation announced plans to boost its commercial activity.

The posts are to go from the trust’s visitor services team.

But the organisation said it was unable to reveal the number of redundancies because it was ‘consulting’ with staff and hoped to avoid job losses by reducing the number of hours worked.

However, eight new positions have been created and those staff will work on exhibitions after Museums Sheffield secured £1.2 million of Arts Council funding.

Sheffield Council is reducing the amount it pays the trust to manage the Graves and Millennium Galleries, and Weston Park Museum due to £50 million of budget cuts in 2013/14.

The organsation, which currently has 74 staff, said it ‘hopes to plug the funding gap’ by increasing its business activity to better support its charitable mission.

Changes include establishment of a new retail team to increase sales at its shops and a programme of evening events later in 2013 to generate income through ticket and bar sales.

Kim Streets, chief executive of Museums Sheffield, said: “While we are disappointed by the proposed 10 per cent reduction in funding, the news was expected.

“Like many museum and gallery organisations across the UK, Museums Sheffield is faced with the challenge of adapting to survive.

“We’re doing this by focussing more of our resources on income generating activity while reducing our core expenditure. In the next few months we will unfortunately lose some posts.”