Letter: Museum charges

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Sir: For the Policy Studies Institute to describe museum charges as inevitable (report, 1 December) is seriously misleading.

When the Heritage Lottery Fund was established it was made clear to all potential beneficiaries that it could not be used for running costs and would not become a substitute for the core funding which was the responsibility of government and other agencies. That policy is now under review, but in the meantime it is hardly fair to blame museums for accepting what they were offered: funds for overdue capital improvements.

The Government must not be allowed to hide behind statements by the PSI. Charges will only be inevitable if its own level of support for our beleaguered cultural institutions leaves no alternative.

DUNCAN ROBINSON

Director

The Fitzwilliam Museum

Cambridge

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