York museum to close - six years after it opened

VISITOR NUMBERS and unfruitful business ventures have been blamed for the decision to shut a Yorkshire tourist attraction after just six years.

Heather Audin, curator at the York Quilt Museum, with an 18th century quilted petticoat

Calling time on the Quilt Museum and Gallery in York, which opened its doors to fanfare in 2008, the The Quilter’s Guild said its closure will take place in October next year.

Despite the fact the museum attracts between 10,000 and 12,500 paying visitors every year, the organisation is unable to continue providing the financial support needed to secure its long-term future.

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Numbers have increased this year, but leaders say this is “nowhere near” what would be needed to reverse the decision.

President Vivien Finch said: “The decision is profoundly disappointing, but we can take comfort in the knowledge that since it opened we have welcomed over 75,000 people to over 50 exhibitions and introduced many visitors to the joy of quilts.

“In addition, we have taught sewing skills.”

Business ventures designed to raise revenue in recent years have included commercial licensing of the collection images and working with holiday companies on specialist tours.

The collection of historic and contemporary quilts which were on display in York will remain with the guild. It is looking for an alternative venue which would allow the public to view them in pre-arranged visits.