The History of Leith

January 24, 2007

Funding for Burns International Museum

Plans to transform two of Scotland’s most popular visitor attractions have secured over £43 million from the government and the heritage lottery fund, it was announced today.

Culture Minister Patricia Ferguson confirmed that the Execeutive has committed £5.5 million towards the proposed Burns International Museum in Ayrshire. The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) will contribute £5.8 million towards the project.

Ms Ferguson also confirmed that a masterplan to redevelop the Royal Museum building, part of the National Museum of Scotland, has been awarded more than £15.2 million by the Executive. HLF is backing the project with £16.7 million.

The Culture Minister said:

“Funding for the Burns International Museum will preserve that legacy of our national bard.

“Robert Burns is a cultural icon and he still continues to inspire new generations of Scots.

“The trustees and local authorities in Ayrshire have worked positively with the National Trust for Scotland to design a museum that does justice to the memory of Burns, one of the world’s greatest cultural icons.

“It will provide a lasting legacy from our Homecoming Scotland campaign to boost the number of visitors to Scotland in 2009, which is the 250th anniversary of Burns’ birth.”

The Minister also praised plans to redevelop the Royal Museum. She said:

“National Museums Scotland has outlined ambitious plans to transform the Royal Museum building into a world-class attraction rivalling most national museums in Europe.

“I am pleased to confirm the Scottish Executive’s support for the project, which follows news that the Heritage Lottery Fund is also providing significant financial backing.

“I am delighted that the Executive and HLF have been able to support such culturally significant projects.”

The estimated capital cost of the Royal Museum transformation project is £46.4 million over the next four years with £16.7 million coming from the HLF, £15.25 million from the Executive and £12.5 million from private sponsorship. It will be used to help new local, national and international audiences, and especially young people, to engage in a memorable learning experience.

£3.1 million of the total Executive funding earmarked for the Royal Museum transformation project (£15.2 million) is a one-off allocation from funds the Executive currently holds on account at HM Treasury.

The HLF has awarded Stage 1 approval to an application from the National Trust for Scotland to rebuild the Burns visitor centre at Alloway in Ayr as a world class Burns International Museum. The Trust expects to submit a Stage 2 application later this year for final approval to the project. The Executive is committed in principle to providing £5.5 million towards the capital cost of the project.

Source-Scottish Executive

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