Yorkshire museum ‘deserves Government funding’

Eureka! in Halifax

Eureka! in Halifax

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HALIFAX MP Holly Lynch has called on the Government to review its rules on museum funding which see the pioneering Eureka! miss out.

Ms Lynch and Eureka! chief executive Leigh-Anne Stradeski held talks with Museums Minister Matt Hancock over the lack of support for the pioneering attraction in Halifax.

Despite being The National Children’s Museum, Eureka! does not qualify for the financial support which allows other national museums to allow free entry.

Ms Stradeski said: “Any profits from our entrance fees, gift shop, café, nursery and corporate activities go towards staffing and general upkeep of Eureka! Museum and Nursery.

“Whilst Eureka! has managed to sustain itself without government support, additional funding could bring the benefit of our unique educational experience to many more children from diverse backgrounds, opening their eyes to their potential and inspiring them to pursue new learning opportunities as they grow older.

“It was fantastic to meet the minister who was very interested in our play-based learning approach.

“We’re hoping he will bring his three young children to Halifax soon to have a first-hand experience of Eureka! as that’s when the true impact of the museum really hits home.”

The Government has previously defended its decision not to fund Eureka! on the same basis as other national museums.

Ministers have pointed to the collection of artefacts held by institutions such as the British Museum and described those of attractions such as Eureka! as “not of a standard or scale comparable”.

The Government’s rules mean Eureka! is classified as a regional museum.

Ms Lynch said: “For the Government to compare Eureka! to the British Museum completely misses what it is trying to achieve.

“It doesn’t hold a large collection of historical items but rather offers children and families a fun and educational experience.

“It cannot be right that almost all the top museums in London are free yet families in Halifax have to pay to access their local cultural spaces.

“Of all the National Museums, the ‘children’s museum’ should surely be as accessible as possible and so I hope that the Government will think very carefully about how we can make Eureka! a museum that everyone can enjoy.”

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