While there’s good news for the Museum of London, overall the cultural heritage sector in the UK is about to suffer. As the 24 Hour Museum puts it:
While the round of government grants, now in its sixth year, is welcomed by the country’s museums and galleries, trepidation still hangs in the air as severe cuts are due to come into force in Heritage Lottery and Arts Council funding.
The main reason for this is money being diverted for the Olympics – the HLF has lost £233m to the Olympic fund up to 2012.
Lottery grants for projects exceeding £5 million have been slashed from £80 million in 2006/07 to half that in 2007/08, and to £20 million in 2008/09. Big handouts have helped projects like the £10m York Minster restoration this year, but commentators say hard decisions will have to be made over future applications of the same significance. The HLF budget for smaller projects has also been reduced.