Letter: Our museums must be free

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The Independent Online
Your article ("Museum staff told: you're history", 6 October) contained several inaccuracies. The number of jobs under threat is not 55 but 35 and the amount to be saved is not pounds 168,000 but pounds 6l8,000. We are not proposing to pay people less for doing the same jobs. We hope to achieve job reductions by early retirement, non-filling of vacancies, voluntary redundancies and redeployment, thereby retaining the council's no redundancy policy.

Your article failed to say why we were doing this. The reorganisation of local government in Scotland means we have less money to spend on all the city's services. The Museums and Galleries face a 6 per cent cut next year, as do Education and Social Work. Our problem is how to achieve this while maintaining core services.

We will do this by keeping our museums and galleries free so that everyone can enjoy them, local people and tourists alike. Legally, charging the latter only is not an option (even if it were possible to identify them).

There are many things we want to do which won't now be possible - but at least we'll be able to provide a basic, quality service for the widest possible public.

Cllr Frank McAveety Convenor

Julian Spalding

Museums Director, City of Glasgow Council

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