Some constituents were concerned to read about the threat of closure for Wisbech Museum after the recent article in the Fenland Citizen. I raised this issue with Fenland District Council and they have said that there whilst there are funding pressures it is not set to close this year. Wisbech Town Council provided grant funding of £20,000 pa from 2017/18 (increasing from £5000 previously.) This is guaranteed for 3 financial years.
Additional funding of £87,000 has been awarded to the Museum by Esme Fairbairn Collections Trustand £68,000 is being asked for from the Arts Council England and grants are being applied from the Fitzwilliam Museum. An application to Heritage Lottery Fund for £85,000 was turned down due to an error in matched funding. A revised submission is being sent shortly.
The museum are also planning to digitise the parish registers held at the museum to create a new income generating revenue stream.
Cambridgeshire Advisory Group on Archives and Local Studies met last week to discuss next steps and I will work with them to support the Museum moving forward.